Ambitious English Super League newcomers Toronto Wolfpack have reportedly made a $9 million play to lure Sonny Bill Williams back to the 13-a-side game.
According to The Sydney Morning Herald, the 34-year-old superstar is weighing up a two-year deal.
Williams is contracted to New Zealand rugby until the conclusion of the Rugby World Cup in Japan - with the All Blacks preparing to face Wales on Friday in the third-place playoff.
He came off the bench in the All Blacks' semi-final defeat to England on Saturday.
It is believed that a host of rugby clubs have already made a play for Williams, while back-to-back NRL premiers Sydney Roosters appear to be priced out of the race for the services of their former back-rower.
Wolfpack want David Beckham-type star
The Wolfpack were established in 2016 and will be the first North American team to compete in Super league after they won promotion to the top-tier via the Million Pound Game on October 5.
They are funded by Australian mining and resources billionaire David Argyle, who has previously revealed his interest in snaring Williams as their marquee signing.
Toronto coach Brian McDermott told the PA news agency earlier this month that they wanted to bring in a David Beckham-type player to raise their profile, much like the former soccer icon did for Los Angeles Galaxy and the MLS, and that Williams fits the bill.
"Our club would want to have a name that's absolutely international that everybody would recognise and help the profile of our game, very much like David Beckham did for Major League Soccer," McDermott said.
The $4.5 million per year deal would reportedly be the richest in rugby league or union history.