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Rumoured Targets 3

Jono078

Coach
Messages
19,843
There’s a surprising amount of negativity around Miller. I doubt we’ve paid big $$$ for him and I also doubt we’ve made any promises aside from maybe the FB spot for round 1. Players know that the landscape shifts rapidly so I doubt he’d be expecting the FB gig guaranteed to him permanently. Worst case scenario we’re getting a mature aged player who just spent a year at the sharks who came 2nd in the regular season in 2022 and he’s got good pace to boot. Maybe he’s got more to his skill set as well. Either way we’re always complaining about the lack of depth at the club and he would at least improve that situation for us a bit. Solid signing imo.
I’m ok with signing him but not a 3-year contract for an unproven outside back heading into his 30s. Nothing about that sounds smart.

Alrhough, he might have a killer season and we’ll be laughing we have him wrapped up for two more. That is equally possible.
 
Messages
1,630
Um there is no official announcement regarding Miller yet and certainly no confirmation on the length of the deal

This fanbase certainly knows how to go off early
 

PhilGould

Bench
Messages
2,928

Kai Pearce-Paul opens up on Newcastle Knights move​


He has been dubbed the English Sonny Bill Williams but Kai Pearce-Paul has vowed to make a mark of his own as he prepares to join the English revolution at the Newcastle Knights.

Pearce-Paul will link with the Knights in 2024, the club confirming his signature along with that of teenage star Will Pryce late on Monday night.

The 21-year-old was a man in high demand. Pearce-Paul fielded calls from seven-time premiership-winning coach Wayne Bennett and Canterbury head of football Phil Gould before he landed on Newcastle.

It was a decision he made having met Knights head of recruitment Clint Zammit in person earlier in the year, where he was sold on Newcastle’s vision for his and their future.

The presence of England teammate Dom Young also helped get Pearce-Paul across the line and he will arrive at Newcastle having drawn comparisons with Williams due to his stature and offloading ability.

Pearce-Paul is flattered by the comparisons but insists he wants to be his own man.
“It is a privilege to be called that, do you know what I mean,” he said.

“At the end of the day I feel like I want my own journey and I want to be my own person, as much as I respect him. It is nice to hear but at the same time I am happy to be Kai and make my own name.

“I back myself. I back myself to give it my all and adapt. I can pick things up pretty quickly. I am sure I will be OK.

“It is never going to be easy. The NRL is the top footy in the world and I know what to expect. I will just give it my all.”

MEETING SONNY BILL

It was Kai’s older brother Kameron who first raised the comparisons with Williams. It is easy to see why when you meet the London-born second rower, who is nearly two metres tall and still growing.

Kai tips the scales at 106kg but expects to add another 10kg to his frame in preparation for his arrival in the NRL.

“I really looked up to Sonny Bill,” Pearce said.

“As a kid I watched a lot of Sonny Bill. He is one of those players whose YouTube highlights I would be watching from when I was young.

“He is someone I always thought I played a little bit like — I liked what he did with the footy. I have always been long and a bit rangy

“I have been able to offload as well from when I was young. He is the master of it. It could potentially be something I picked yup from watching him and his style.

“I guess I have always had the frame to be a good offloader.”

Pearce has never met Williams but would relish the opportunity.

“I watched him in that New Zealand-England final (at the 2013 World Cup) a few years back, binoculars from the crowd,” he said.

“He would be someone I would want to meet. That would be pretty cool, a pretty cool experience.”

MISSING HOME

Ask Pearce-Paul who he will miss most as he prepares to switch to the NRL and he doesn’t hesitate. Pearce-Paul and his two brothers — Kaden and Kameron — were raised by their mother Marianna in Lewisham, a suburb in southeast London.

The brothers haven’t spoken to their father in years.

“She always wanted me to be the best I can really be,” Pearce-Paul said.

“I love Wigan, I love every minute I am there. It is a great club and great people. When this opportunity came up this time round, she said to me do you think you can give it a go.

“As a parent, you want your kids to do the best they can. She wants me to aim for the highest. She will miss me though — she calls me most days.

“I am sure she will come out when she can. I am sure she will love the country as well. She is my world, my mum.

“She helps me with everything, she is a great person. She just wanted me to reach as high as I could.”

Newcastle is a long way from London but Pearce-Paul insists that he is ready for the move.

“I am at the point now especially this season where I don’t have to go home - it is lovely to see them and every time I see them I really enjoy it, but I don’t feel the need to go and see mum,” he said.

“Now I feel like I am a lot more independent. This is almost like the next step, being in a different time zone. I know my family will be there for me wherever I am in the world.

“I know Newcastle will look after me as well.”

WOOED BY BENNETT, GOULD

It was a bleak and wet day in Manchester when News Corp sat down with Pearce-Paul to talk about the future and his plans to conquer the NRL.

He drove nearly an hour, negotiating English traffic, because he wanted to meet in person to discuss his ascent from London hopeful to England Test star.

He is polite and well-mannered, qualities that no doubt left an impression on the two biggest names to chase his signature.

Being pursued by Bennett is one thing. Throw in Gould and it shows what sort of potential Pearce-Paul has in his sizeable frame.

“I spoke to Wayne — he is a great guy as well,” Pearce-Paul said.

“He was very straight forward — he tells you exactly how it is and what he wants. I appreciate that in a person.

“It was interesting talking to Wayne and someone of his calibre. I spoke to (Dolphins recruitment guru Peter) O’Sullivan as well. It wasn’t easy deciding. It was quite late that I came to the final decisions.

“I was really stuck. All the options were really good options and I am really appreciative to have people of that calibre and experience in the sport wanting me.

“I was hard to choose.”

Harder still when Gould entered the equation.

“He was pretty similar to Wayne,” Pearce-Paul said.

“He was pretty old school and tells you what he wants.”

Remarkably, Pearce-Paul was also chased by Melbourne and Storm coach Craig Bellamy a few years back. At the time, he opted to move to Wigan to further his career.

“It came to a point where I had to choose between Melbourne and Wigan,” Pearce-Paul said.

“That was a bigger jump to make ... I was just turning 18 and hadn’t really been away from home before for a long time.

“Wigan was only two hours on a train away from home. As much as I think Melbourne Storm was a good option, Wigan were very keen and made it clear how much they wanted me.”

WHY THE KNIGHTS?

Pearce-Paul did his research before he landed on Newcastle. As well as speaking to Zammit and Young, he picked the brains of England teammates John Bateman and George Williams, and former Warriors star Thomas Leuluai.

The idea of playing in a league-mad city like Newcastle was appealing. As was the opportunity to play alongside Knights star Kalyn Ponga.

“Having someone like KP is something you can dream of as an offloader really,” he said.

“I know this year at Wigan, Jai Field was all over the place. There would be times when I wouldn’t even see him, he would just call and I would throw it.

“He would be straight onto it. I like playing with players who are active and love an offload.”

The lifestyle in Newcastle also appealed. Pearce-Paul is a rugby league rarity in that he hails from London, a city dominated by soccer and rugby union.

The chance to play at a club that lives and breathes rugby league, much like Wigan, was too good to resist.

He has vowed to reward the supporters’ passion by giving his all in a Knights jersey. Asked what the Newcastle fans could expect, he said: “Hard worker, big presence, I want to be someone who makes an impact, someone who is physical and can make a difference to a game.

“That is what I want them to expect from me. Off the field, I am a pretty nice guy. For me, it is just challenging myself and trying to become the best player I can, and have the best career I can, and make the biggest impact on the sport that I can as well.”

 

ryan.a87

Juniors
Messages
438
Hopefully he reaches the heights of our last player compared to SBW (Sione)…….already played internationally and will play a few seasons in his preferred position before we mismanage him and he peters out into nothingness
 

macavity

Coach
Messages
19,815
Hopefully he reaches the heights of our last player compared to SBW (Sione)…….already played internationally and will play a few seasons in his preferred position before we mismanage him and he peters out into nothingness

Dude, are you ok?
 

PhilGould

Bench
Messages
2,928

Parr sounds confident of re-signing him but says some agents are waiting until the CBA is finalised to start negotiating salaries, and the club will find out if that's how they want to proceed in the next few days. He has an extended break because of the World Cup and is staying in the UK over Christmas before starting pre-season in early January.
 

PhilGould

Bench
Messages
2,928
An Englishman who has played 26 first-grade games has emerged as the most in-demand player in the NRL.

Dominic Young, the strapping Knights flyer from Huddersfield with Jamaican genes and a penchant for scoring tries, leads a star-studded list of players still for sale with each of their contract calls set to dominate headlines over summer.

Young, who scored 14 tries in 20 games for a Knights side that ranked second-last for points scored this year, is the focus of extraordinary interest from nine NRL clubs including the Roosters, Rabbitohs, Storm, Sharks, Bulldogs, The Dolphins, Titans, Cowboys and Raiders.

He has the most interest of any player on the open market.

Not even off-contract million-dollar plus players including Mitchell Moses, Stephen Crichton, Dylan Brown or David Fifita have fielded as much interest from as many clubs.

The Roosters like the idea of adding Young to their already potent backline. Rabbitohs coach Jason Demetriou is a huge fan of Young‘s size and speed, believing that he could easily transition to the centres.

The Bulldogs feel the same way, believing that a 2024 backline of Josh Addo-Carr, Bronson Xerri, Jacob Kiraz, Young and potentially Crichton would be lethal.

Cronulla are keeping their eye on Young in case centre Jesse Ramien doesn’t accept an offer that’s been before him for several weeks now.

The Cowboys and Storm believe their willingness to move the ball would suit Young‘s strike power.

In the face of mass interest, the Knights are preparing to up the ante to keep Young, who ex-recruitment officer Alex McKinnon signed for the club after first watching video of the athletic talent on his laptop in 2020.

Young‘s game-wide appeal is a combination of his upside at just 21, his ability to play wing, centre or back row and his price tag.

His salary is manageable for most clubs, unlike the million-dollar plus players that only a few select clubs can afford.

 
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