Now, arguably the games best fullback is set to sign a deal worth $1 million that will ensure he remains at the Storm for the remainder of his career.
As we draw nearer and nearer to the start of the Four Nations, Slater has declared he had no intentions to leave the club, which is a boost to Melbourne as they look to the future, in light of their recent cap scandals.
Despite already being contracted to the Storm until the end of 2012, Slater and his manager George Mimis have already begun discussing a 3 year extension to that deal, which will effectively mean that Slater will end his career at the Storm.
Just 8 months ago, such a deal would have seemed impossible due to the Storm’s cap scandal.
“But what happened over the last few months has only enhanced the camaraderie of the place,” Slater said.
“When things aren’t going so well, it’s easier for everyone to take their own direction, but the club is just so strong.”
Slater’s NRL career began at just 4 years old, when he played for the Brothers club in Innisfail in far North Queensland.
He almost gave the game up however, when at the age of 15, he quit league and worked as a trackwork jockey under Gai Waterhouse in Sydney.
League would have the last laugh however, as Slater’s love of the game couldn’t keep him away. His determination was evident when he travelled 20 hours to play for the then Melbourne Storm feeder side Norths Devils in Brisbane.
Later that day, after impressing those at the Storm in leaps and bounds, he signed his first NRL contract.
“I went down there as a 19-year-old kid. I was single, I had a suitcase – that’s all I had,” Slater said.
“Now I’ve got a house, a beautiful wife and two kids.
“I’ve grown a lot since I’ve gone down there. Melbourne’s home for me now.
“You always weigh up your options and your opportunities when you sit down and start thinking about negotiating a new contract.
“But that’s the place for me and if we could do a deal until the end of my career, I would be very proud to be a one-club man.
“I have been involved with the club for nearly 10 years now.
“It’s a place that’s given me an opportunity to fulfil my dreams and a chance for me now to finish my career at the place where it all started.”