Brisbane outcast Jack Bird is set to join St George Illawarra as both parties look to land on a deal for the Broncos star to join the Dragons despite having one year remaining on his contract.
It is understood that Bird is keen on moving home to Sydney, with the Broncos keen on shedding his $975,000-per-season salary.
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According to Triple M’s Brent Read, Bird is set to join the Dragons eventually.
“There was some Twitter activity today that Jack has done a deal with St George Illawarra,” Read said.
“This deal is not close at the moment, but I think it will happen just because there is an appetite on both sides for it to happen.
“Now there is talks going on, but I think those talks have hit a bit of an impasse at the moment. I don’t think it has progressed to the stage where there is an agreement in place.
“There is a couple of issues at play. Jack is on a huge contract next year. He has one year left and he has a $975,000 deal.
“St George are not going to foot the entirety of that bill. Somehow they have got to work out a way where Brisbane will pitch in enough money.
“I believe Brisbane offered to put in $200,000 initially then they offered to put in $300,000 and both times the Dragons said that was not enough.”
Injuries have halted Bird’s development in recent years, with the centre featuring just 17 times for the Broncos across the last three seasons.
“There is certainly an appetite at the Dragons for Jack Bird,” Read said.
“There is an appetite for Brisbane to let Jack Bird go and head back to Sydney because as they understand it that is what Jack wants.
“The other challenge for the Dragons is that they would have to give him a two-year-deal so they would have to give him another year.
“That is a challenge because what is he worth? No one really knows.”
Read believes the Dragons will look to utilise Bird across the field.
“There was a suggestion they were looking at him as a fullback, but obviously Matt Dufty is there at the moment,” Read said.
“I would have thought potentially in the centres or at lock. They have Jack de Belin there, but there is obviously a question mark over him.
“As I understand it Anthony Griffin is a big fan of Jack Bird, so I think it will happen it is just a matter of when.”
New Zealand coach Nathan Brown backed Bird’s flexibility.
“If his body holds up he can play anywhere,” Brown said.
“He is just a good player. He can play anywhere as long as he is fit.”