It is shaping as a real watershed month on the recruitment front for the Knights.
And a positive outcome could provide the club with a massive boost leading into the start of the premiership.
Not only are the Knights deep in negotiations with Dragons' Kangaroos star Tyson Frizell and expecting a decision on his future sooner rather than later, officials are now eyeing off a potential triple-whammy recruitment announcement before the premiership kicks off.
Frizell's signature on a three-year contract starting in 2021 would be the jewel in the crown. But while it might be an optimistic time-frame, the club is also angling to be in a position to trumpet the re-signing of utility star Connor Watson and an upgrade and two-year extension for Kalyn Ponga as well before the season-opener against the Warriors.
"Imagine being able to announce all three signings leading into the Warriors game next month," one Knights insider told us. "What a great lift for the club and the town that would be."
The Frizell talks are on-going with a further meeting believed to be set down for next week. Ironically, he is likely to line up for the Dragons against the Knights in a trial at Maitland next Saturday.
Meanwhile, off-contract Watson has told the club he is keen to stay in Newcastle and coach O'Brien wants him longer term so it appears only a matter of time before a new deal is done.
As for Ponga's longer term future beyond the end of 2021, the club has until October to get a deal done before he is legally able to talk to rivals.
But if the brilliant young fullback is keen to stay and wants to factor in an upgrade for this season as well as 2021 as part of a two year extension which the Knights are happy to concede to, he will need to get a wriggle on if he is to have the new deal sorted out in time.
The kicker for Ponga is he could potentially miss out on a bonus of as much as $100,000 this year if he doesn't act sooner rather than later.
As for Frizell, privately, we're hearing the Knights believe they are in with a real chance of luring him to the club.
Given he has already played 14 Tests for Australia and featured in 11 Origin games for the Blues, he would be one of Newcastle's biggest ever signings and a real coup for recruitment boss Alex McKinnon if he can pull it off. At 28, Frizell is in the top two or three backrowers in the game.
As it stands, the Knights aren't aware if any other clubs are in the running for his signature and believe his interest in potentially moving his family to Newcastle is genuine.
But he has to make the big call to part ways with the Dragons first, a club where he has spent the past seven seasons and played almost 150 NRL games.
If money becomes the deciding factor, the Knights are in the box seat. The Kangaroos and Blues' star could expect to command somewhere between $700,000 to $800,000 a season on the open market.
The Knights have plenty of salary cap reserves and also have veteran Aidan Guerra, who is earning around $550,000 this season, coming off contract and likely to finish his career in England. The suggestion is the Dragons will struggle to even get close to matching those sorts of numbers.
Adding further weight to the Knights bid has been the influence of Frizell's NSW Blues teammates Mitchell Pearce and David Klemmer. Just as Pearce played a role in talking Klemmer into making the move from the Bulldogs to the Knights, both have played their part during the negotiation process with Frizell.
There has been a number of calls and texts from both, singing the praises of the city and the future of the club under coach Adam O'Brien.
Just like Nathan Brown before him, O'Brien is convinced the signing of a top-line backrower could mean the difference between his side challenging for the top eight and actually competing for a title with the premiership heavyweights.
Put Frizell in a side alongside a spine featuring Pearce, Ponga and Jayden Brailey, two Origin props in Klemmer and Daniel Saifiti and some outstanding emerging young outside backs in Bradman Best, Starford To'a and Gehamat Shibasaki and it's not hard to see where he is coming from.
Maitland deny Brad Tighe signing
Maitland coach Matt Lantry has denied the biggest rumour doing the rounds in the Real NRL - that Wests Rosellas centre Brad Tighe has signed with the Pickers for this season.
Tighe, who played 171 NRL games for the Knights, Penrith and the Gold Coast, was tipped to retire at the end of last season after winning the premiership with the Lantry-coached Rosellas.
But it's understood he has spoken to a number of clubs including Wests, Maitland and Macquarie about the possibility of continuing his career with speculation strongly linking him to a move to the Pickers. Not so, according to Lantry.
"I've heard the talk as well but I honestly can't see it happening now," Lantry told us.
"We spoke to Brad back in December and had all but agreed but in the end, nothing eventuated. You never say never in this game but we can't afford him now and I doubt we would be able to squeeze him in points-wise even if we could."
Wests coach Todd Lowrie said Tighe won't be at the Rosellas while it's understood the Scorpions have also baulked at his asking price.
Still on the Pickers, the club has denied young halfback Jeremy Gibson's request for a release. Gibson is believed to have asked for the release after Maitland signed Brock Lamb, believing he would get a greater opportunity to play first grade elsewhere.
Former Knights halfback and current Triple M Newcastle co-commentator Matt Rodwell has been strongly linked to the soon-to-be vacant St George Illawarra CEO's job.
Rodwell, who won the Norwich Rising Star and Dally M rookie of the year awards back in 1992, has also been touted as a contender for the Knights director of football role.
Take the tip
Boxing legend Johnny Lewis, in Port Stephens to attend a Men of League function last week, is tipping Jeff Horn to take care of Tim Tszyu when the two step into the ring on April 22.
Still on boxing, former Knight Nathan Ross made light work of Central Coast's Steve Hunt when the pair stepped into the ring for an amateur fight at Doyalson RSL last weekend. It was all over in 73 seconds.
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