The Knights are trying to keep Anthony Milford by enticing him with a multi-year extension despite the fact he has a handshake agreement with the Dolphins.
Milford was given a career lifeline with the Knights after being let go by the Broncos and the Rabbitohs while he fought a court battle that he has since been found not guilty.
Brent Read revealed on Triple M that Milford, who was keen to return to the Dolphins under Wayne Bennett in the future, may be convinced to stay with the promise of long-term security at the Knights.
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“Milford has a handshake agreement with the Dolphins to go back to Queensland next year,” Read said on Triple M.
“He has a handshake agreement with Wayne Bennett and the Dolphins.
“Newcastle desperately want him to stay. They are talking about a multi-year deal.
“At the Dolphins my understanding is it is only a one-year term.
“The Knights are hoping they can convince him to stay by offering him a few more years.
“It is one of those ones that hangs in the balance a bit and it might hinge on the Wests Tigers and what they decide to do with Luke Brooks.
“If they decide they are happy for Luke Brooks to go and Newcastle was obviously a club that was interested in Brooks in the off-season.
“If the Knights were to make another bid for Luke Brooks then potentially they will drop off Milford.
“But at the moment they are trying to convince Milford to stay.”
The 27-year-old has scored 70 tries in 197 NRL games for the Raiders, Broncos and Knights since his debut in 2013 and has played two Origins for the Maroons and seven Tests for Samoa.
BRONCO’S VETERAN TO TAKE MONSTER PAY CUT TO STAY AT RED HILL
Broncos flyer Corey Oates is reportedly set to take a huge pay cut and stay at Red Hill in yet another blow for Wayne Bennett’s Dolphins.
Oates was on the outer at Brisbane in the summer but a stunning return to form which has seen him picked in the Maroons squad this week.
The Dolphins were circling but Brisbane are set to offer a two-year extension to keep Oates at the club until the end of 2024, according to The Courier Mail.
The 27-year-old has played eight games for Queensland matches will reportedly take a pay cut of around $200,000 a season.
Oates is on an estimated $550,000 but the Broncos priority remains retaining Herbie Farnworth Queensland Origin bolter Selwyn Cobbo.
“I am really proud of Corey,” Broncos head of football Ben Ikin told News Corp.
“He will admit he had some seasons where he wasn’t playing his best footy, but he decided to turn it around and he hatched a plan in his own mind on how he was going to do it and he went to work.”
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HULL BLOW EELS OUT OF WATER
Parramatta Eels are set to farewell another star at the end of the season with Tom Opacic reportedly headed to the Super League.
According to Courier Mail, the center has signed a three-year deal worth $500,000 a season to link up with Hull KR in 2023.
It is a blow to the Eels and Brad Arthur who were understood to be keen on keeping the reliable 27-year-old. They tabled a one-year extension worth a reported $150,000 but Hull blew them out of the water.
The Eels are already bracing for an exodus of players at season’s end with Isaiah Papali’i, Marata Niukore, Oregon Kaufusi and Reed Mahoney having already signed with rival clubs.
Ryan Matterson stemmed the tide of departures by turning down a lucrative offer from the Dolphins to re-sign with the blue and gold.
News of Opacic’s departure prompted The Daily Telegraph’s Michael Carryannis to question whether the Eels’ premiership window was about to slam shut.
“It just poses the question I guess with Marata Niukore, Isaiah Papali’I, Oregon Kaufusi, Reed Mahoney of course, is this it for Parramatta’s shot at the title,” he said on SEN.
“We’ve seen how good they can be on their day, it was all on display against the Roosters, but we saw how bad they can be against the Bulldogs.
“I just wonder if this is it for Parramatta for the next couple of years.”
PANTHERS STAR TARGETED BY RIVALS
The Panthers are reportedly likely to lose flyer Charlie Staines at the end of the season.
The “Forbes Ferrari”, as he has been dubbed, has found himself on the outer for the premier and down the pecking order for his preferred position of fullback.
“One of the guys that can’t get a chance for them (Penrith) consistently is Charlie Staines,” Sydney Morning Herald’s Adrian Proszenko said on SEN 1170 Afternoons.
“I think it’s fair to say he won’t be at the club next year.
“He had been groomed as a potential long-term fullback at the club, but Dylan Edwards has cemented that considering the way he’s playing.
“There’s probably a feeling that Stephen Crichton would be next in line.”
Proszenko said there were a couple of rival clubs interested.
“A couple of clubs that are having a sniff around are the Wests Tigers and the Bulldogs,” Proszenko said.
“The interesting thing there is that they both don’t have a coach at the moment, there’s no use having a player if the (new) coach doesn’t want said player.”
What could play a key role in Staines’ decision is the future of Cameron Ciraldo.
The Panthers assistant coach is being targeted by both the Bulldogs and the Tigers as they search for replacements for Trent Barrett and Michael Maguire.
“But the interesting thing is that they’re both sniffing around Cameron Ciraldo who obviously knows what Charlie Staines, ‘the Forbes Ferrari’, is capable of,” Proszenko said.
“That will be one to keep an eye on.”