The NRL has vowed to heed the mistakes of failed Auckland Nines and rugby 10s ventures as its first Magic Round delivers financial windfalls up to five times what clubs would normally bank from hosting games at home.
Brisbane's inaugural Magic Round is tracking to bring over 130,000 fans to Suncorp Stadium over four days, with the Titans-Sharks kicking off the weekend before 17,113 on Thursday night.
NRL.com understands that with $2-3 million in game day revenue projected over round nine, each of the eight clubs that have moved home fixtures will receive around a $270,000 boost to their respective bottom lines.
For a team like the Gold Coast it's a significant cash injection given last year's corresponding game against Cronulla, held on a Saturday night at Cbus Super Stadium, attracted just short of 13,000 and would have delivered the club around $50-60,000.
The investment in the concept by the Queensland government and Brisbane City Council is also paying healthy dividends, with the NRL projecting a $20 million return.
Having been burned by a lacklustre crowd response to the first two editions of rugby's Brisbane 10s event – putting it on hiatus in 2019 – Queensland politicians knocked back the first three Magic Round proposals tabled by the NRL.
CEO Todd Greenberg and his executive team remain mindful of the concept fizzling out in similar fashion to the Auckland Nines, which disappeared from the rugby league calendar in 2017.
Privately the NRL argues Magic Round is viewed as a growth tool and not necessarily a profit generator, as is natural when outsourced to private promoters like Duco, who ran the Nines concept.
In a bid to ensure the event remains sustainable, head office will push for next year's Magic Round to be held across three days having bowed to Channel Nine's insistence on keeping a Thursday night game as scheduled.
Negotiations will continue around how the round plays out in 2020, which will return to Brisbane under the NRL's initial two-year commitment to the Queensland government.
The Government and Council then have the option to keep Magic Round in the Sunshine State for a further two years afterwards.
Locations including Perth, Melbourne, Auckland and exotic overseas options like the US, Hong Kong and Singapore are all being kept in mind further down the track.