NEWCASTLE, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 17: Kalyn Ponga of the Newcastle Knights in action during the round 22 NRL match between the Newcastle Knights and the North Queensland Cowboys at McDonald Jones Stadium on August 17, 2019 in Newcastle, Australia. (Photo by Ashley Feder/Getty Images)

Although the recently admitted Dolphins are yet to make their first official signing, the expansion franchise are reportedly readying themselves to make Newcastle's Kalyn Ponga the richest man in rugby league.

While the Queenslander holds a player-optioned contract with the Knights until the cessation of 2024, The Daily Telegraph's Phil Rothfield claimed a "ridiculous" proposition could see the fullback flee north.

Speaking on Sky Sports' 'Big Sport Breakfast', the veteran scribe believed that the newest sunshine state side saw the 23-year-old as their number one prospect to be the face of their franchise.

“I still think they’ll go harder for Kalyn Ponga more than any other player,” Rothfield said.

“I’ve heard ridiculous money, I’ve heard about $1.4 million a year, which would make him clearly the highest-paid player in the game. He’s ex-Queensland, (he) originally started at the Cowboys.”

NEWCASTLE, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 07: Kalyn Ponga of the Newcastle Knights warms up during the round four NRL match between the Newcastle Knights and the St George Illawarra Dragons at McDonald Jones Stadium on April 07, 2019 in Newcastle, Australia. (Photo by Ashley Feder/Getty Images)

Despite a figure of this magnitude remaining unofficial, should such an offer actually arise, it would prove near impossible to turn down.

Still, as the mechanics of Ponga's contract in the Hunter remain complicated, a simple shift and a healthy bank balance may remain out of reach for the Kiwi-born prospect.

According to a late August report from Fox SportsJames Hooper, Ponga's player option with Newcastle is only set to take effect if the Knights somehow manage to win the premiership in 2023.

Given the two-time premiers are currently on the 10th line with bookmakers to claim their first competition since 2001, the task ahead of them appears behemoth.

Because of this particular clause, Ponga remains unable to speak with rivals for the next 12-months as he is not officially regarded as a free-agent.

TAMWORTH, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 21: Kalyn Ponga of the Knights looks on during the round seven NRL match between the Wests Tigers and the Newcastle Knights at Scully Park on April 21, 2018 in Tamworth, Australia. (Photo by Jason McCawley/Getty Images)

With the latest negotiating period for out-of-contract players opening as of this Monday, clubs of all sizes will be either dipping their toes in at the market or jumping in with a cavalier attitude.

And as The Dolphins have an entire 30-man roster to fill, one would imagine their approach will be much more unencumbered than their 16 rivals.