St George Illawarra coach Anthony Griffin has reportedly told the Broncos to “nick off” as negotiations for $1 million star Jack Bird fell apart this week.
It emerged Wednesday the Dragons have pulled out of negotiations with the Broncos after the club’s bizarre negotiating tactic of giving the Dragons the cold shoulder.
The Daily Telegraph’s Dean Ritchie first reported the breakdown and has now told Sky Sports Radio the situation will cost Bird his preferred move back to the Dragons.
The former Cronulla star is reportedly hoping to leave the Broncos with a full season still to run on his contract, reported to be worth $975,000 for 2021, but is at the mercy of the Broncos and Dragons as they negotiate exactly how much the Brisbane club will have to pay of his 2021 salary.
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Bird has managed just two tries in 17 games in his three seasons at the Broncos and didn’t play at all in 2020 after injuring his ACL on the eve of Round 1.
It comes after reports last week emerged that suggested the deal would eventually be worked out, despite the Dragons reportedly knocking back the Broncos’ offer to contribute just $200,000 towards Birds’ wages in 2021.
Jack Bird can’t catch a break.Source:AAP
Ritchie, however, said the negotiations now look dead in the water.
“He (Bird) wanted to go to St George. St George were very, very keen. An offer was looming,” Ritchie said on Wednesday.
“St George went to the Broncos with an offer. Clearly the Broncos would have to tip in because he’s on $975,000 next year. They made an offer, the Broncos said no, so St George sat back and waited for the counter offer to come back and they got nothing. Which they found a little strange given that the Broncos were trying to shop Jack Bird around.
“They got a sense the Broncos were being arrogant in their own way, by saying basically, ‘Take him off our hands and he’s all yours’. Well the Dragons are saying, ‘He’s your issue. You’ve signed him. We’re not here to clean up your mess’.
“In the end the hackles went up on Anthony Griffin and he said, ‘You know what, forget about it’ and now all bets are off.
“It’s the first time Anthony Griffin’s been able to tell the Broncos to nick off.”
Griffin was famously sacked by the Broncos in 2014.
According to reports, the Bulldogs are also interested in signing Bird.
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