The Roosters could release star centre Latrell Mitchell from the final year of his contract after a dramatic turn in negotiations led to the premiers pulling their extension offer off the table.
Mitchell is contracted to the Tricolours for next season but NRL.com understands the club would be willing to grant an immediate release should a rival outfit pay enough freight on his 2020 salary.
The Test centre's relationship with heavy hitters at the club has been strained in recent weeks by a public meeting with Canterbury official George Coorey at his home, having been linked to a Bulldogs move in 2021 for some time.
On Tuesday night the Roosters confirmed that Mitchell's current two-year contract extension offer – understood to be worth $800,000 a season – had been withdrawn.
The Roosters released a statement on Tuesday night to say they had "advised the management of Latrell Mitchell that the club’s offer for 2021 and beyond has been withdrawn following discussions with Latrell today.
"Latrell has expressed that he would like to explore his options for season 2021, however he remains under contract with the Roosters for season 2020."
While the Bulldogs have been linked to Mitchell for much of 2019, NRL.com understands there are elements of the club that are also reticent to outlay the $1 million price tag he is reportedly seeking.
Canterbury have also already spent much of their 2020 salary cap, making an immediate pursuit difficult.
The offer believed to be in the $800,000 per season ballpark that was pulled by the Roosters would have made Mitchell the highest paid centre in the NRL, though the 22-year-old international has spoken often about his desire to shift into the halves down the line.
He hit out at ongoing speculation around his contract negotiations on Tuesday night, before the Roosters statement was released.
"I'll do what's right for my family and I. No one has any influence on my decisions. I've moved out of home at age 15 to give myself a life. Now I have the responsibility of giving my kids a life I didn't have!!"
Along with Mitchell, the Roosters have a slew of top line talent coming off contract in 2020 and able to field official offers from rival clubs, headlined by co-captain Jake Friend, props Jared Waerea-Hargreaves and Siosiua Taukeiaho.
Mitchell's manager Wayde Rushton was unable to be contacted on Tuesday night.