Hynes enjoyed a breakout campaign with the Storm this year, playing across halfback, five-eighth and at fullback under Craig Bellamy after emerging as a versatile reinforcement for several injured stars.
The 25-year-old thrived in the No.1 jumper in the absence of superstar speedster Ryan Papenhuyzen, while also showing his poise and pedigree in the halves during a career-best campaign.
Hynes' move to the Shire has raised the question of where Fitzgibbon can best capitalise on the utility's services, with Sharks fullback Will Kennedy also reaching new heights in 2021.
The deep half options have left Fitzgibbon with a healthy problem ahead of his maiden senior coaching season, with the incoming Cronulla boss revealing to The Sydney Morning Herald that Hynes will be the leading figure for his halves strikeforce next year.
The 44-year-old admitted he is yet to have a grasp on his playmaking pecking order, but Hynes' more suited role will see the Sharks' star signing hold down the fort at the six or seven.
“A lot of people wouldn’t know, but Nicho has only just started playing fullback in the last 12 to 18 months,” Fitzgibbon said.
“He actually grew up as a half, and he’s been a half most of his life. We signed him as a half.
“What that looks like? I’m not sure. I haven’t even watched a training session with our existing halves, but competition for spots makes everything competitive.”
"We need to complement a style that makes Nicho look the same way he did this year because he’s pretty exciting. If he wears No.7 or No.6, I’m not going to change the way he plays."
Hynes headlines a star-studded crop of recruits at Fitzgibbon's disposal for his first season with the club, as Cronulla look to make a return to the finals frame.
The Sharks have also managed to bolster their forward pack for the 2022 season, with Hynes' teammate and NSW lock Dale Finucane linking up with Dragons star Cameron McInnes in switching to the blue, white and black.
— Cronulla Sharks (@Cronulla_Sharks) October 16, 2021
The trio of inclusions will look to lead a revamped Cronulla squad for the future, with the Sharks having moved on several senior figures this season.