Brisbane Lions great Michael Voss has revealed Nathan Buckley is the most “intense” character he came across throughout his illustrious career.
The champion pair were once teammates at Brisbane for the solitary season in 1993, with Buckley winning the Rising Star Award and taking out the Bears’ Best and Fairest.
After one year up north, Buckley sought a trade to Melbourne with Collingwood winning the race for his signature, playing 270 games in the black and white between 1994-2007.
Voss would go on to captain Brisbane to the famous ‘three-peat’ of premierships between 2001-2003 – with two of those coming against a Buckley-led Magpies side.
“I think people forget of Bucks’ time (at Brisbane). We were teammates and actually good mates,” Voss told Damian Barrett on the In The Game podcast.
“He was as intense a character as I’ve ever come across.
“I remember going back home to chat to my dad and said, ‘dad, I don’t know whether I can be like that. If I have to be that intense, I don’t know whether I want to be that good a player’.
“He was in another way so good for our football club too because he came in with a real confidence in the way he played. He came with a real presence.
“But he came with this real determination and I think that really grated on a lot of people at the time and unfortunately so because we desperately needed it.”
Voss says the 2003 Brownlow Medallist’s passion and drive to succeed as a youngster “stayed with him” for the rest of his career.
“We needed players we could look at and say, ‘geez, that’s a pretty impressive work rate’. And his passion for football was unbelievable so it sort of taught me a new level by just observing,” Voss added.
“Not so much about what he was saying or necessarily doing but just observing him and saying, ‘I’ve got to go to another level here’. This guy has walked in, he works his absolute butt off, does all the extras, he loves footy and he’s so intense.
“Sometimes that intensity did overflow for him, which he now concedes, and you clearly see him as a leader today the way he goes about it.
“As a young player, I was 17 or 18, and got to learn about Nathan Buckley and what he did and he was a 21-year-old man that taught me a lot of things.”
“Even though he left, that really stayed with me.”