Dragons coach Shane Flanagan has spoken for the first time after it was announced that star winger Zac Lomax would be released from his contract at the end of the season.

Not only has Flanagan discussed the rumours of a potential player swap involving Lomax, but he has also addressed the future of club captain Ben Hunt, who was linked with leaving the Dragons last season.

As confirmed by the club earlier this week, Lomax has been released from the final two years of his contract (2025 and 2026) and has been given permission to speak with rival clubs about his future.

However, after reports emerged that he could end up leaving the Dragons before the end of the season, coach Shane Flanagan has taken aim at the suggestions and indicated that there would be no player swap involving Lomax and clubs such as the Parramatta Eels.

“There's no player swap going on, Zac is here until the rest of the year,” Flanagan said via The Daily Telegraph.

“I don't know where all that chat has come from. We'll just move and hopefully this is the last time we speak about it.

“I know you all have jobs, but this is not news, this has been going on for weeks. All the people I talk to are dead set sick of it.”

“There's been stories going around we've had arguments, there has been none of that. Zac has made a decision that he wants to leave the club. It's not the first time this has happened, it's not going to be the last,” he continued.

“Well we can't have people that don't want to be here. If you don't want to be here, it's hard to turn it around, and that hasn't happened so we've got to move forward.”

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 01: Zac Lomax of the Dragons makes a break during the round 24 NRL match between the St George Illawarra Dragons and the Wests Tigers at Sydney Cricket Ground on September 01, 2019 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)

Flanagan has also denied that the Lomax issue has anything to do with captain Ben Hunt. Hunt famously asked for a release from the club last season after Anthony Griffin was sacked as coach.

The newly-appointed coach, who is only four rounds into his tenure, stated that Hunt will not only see out the remainder of his contract at the Red V but could even sign a contract extension with the club.

“Ben has nothing to do with Zac Lomax,” Flanagan added.

“Ben wants to be here. Ben will see out his contract and maybe go further so don't confuse the issue of Ben and Zac. They are too different issues.”