In-limbo Melbourne hooker Harry Grant says he's unsure how Brandon Smith's injury affects his own short-term future at the NRL club.
Grant has been on edge for weeks with a proposed loan deal - that would have sent him to the West Tigers for a season in exchange for centre Paul Momirovski - believed to have been blocked by the NRL.
But with second-choice hooker Smith to miss 4-6 weeks due to a facial fracture suffered in the All Stars game, Grant is now effectively the back-up for Cameron Smith.
"I'm not too sure (where it leaves me) at the moment," Grant said on Tuesday.
"Obviously I've got to look after the Storm first, I don't want to be selfish and leave when they're in need of another back-up hooker if Brandon's out and obviously the club will look at that too.
"In saying that, it could affect it.
"But I'm just sitting at the moment, waiting to see the verdict and see what the club comes up with on both parties - from the Tigers and the Storm."
Grant, who has made just two NRL appearances, said he was prepared to play a role in the middle if called upon.
The 22-year-old is contracted to Melbourne until the end of 2022.
"I obviously feel that I'm ready and the next step for me is to develop my game playing NRL but in saying that, Cam's the GOAT (greatest of all time) and if he wants to play for as long as he wants to, he will," Grant said.
"I've learned a lot off him and can't thank him enough for what he's done for me the last couple of years.
"So at the moment I'm biding my time and he deserves all the respect to be there and if I'm going back to Q-Cup then I'm just going to keep working on my trade there."
Grant was confident he and the younger Smith could co-exist at the Storm if Cameron Smith does retire.
"We both really enjoy playing alongside each other because we see the game very similar, so we can read each other's game a bit," he said.
"So I'm pretty excited in the future to either play alongside him or in a rotation with him."