NRL: Players strike threatens new season, as collective bargaining negotiations drag on

The NRL pay dispute has escalated, with players now threatening a competition-wide strike, if the new collective bargaining agreement isn't finalised soon.

With the opening round just weeks away, the new season could now be delayed or even cancelled.

NRL stars have started boycotting media opportunities and interviews in the past 48 hours, sending a very strong message to the NRL that they are unhappy this pay dispute is dragging out.

The negotiations are quite complicated, and involve salary caps and the nitty-gritty of player contracts.

NZ Warriors chief executive Cameron George has told Newshub his club's media opportunity was last week and clubs had sorted their own salary caps.

"With regards to where the players and the RLPA, they obviously have a number of moving parts to the CBA that haven't been negotiated and concluded at this point in time, so those negotiations still exist," said George. 

"In terms of the clubs, our matters have been concluded with the NRL in terms of the CBA and our funding."

The NRL competition starts in six weeks, which should be enough time to sort out what has become a very messy dispute that has dragged out since last October, and sparked such dramatic action from the NRL stars and their clubs.