Professional rugby may have ceased but the unseemly scrum to plunder the post-pandemic spoils promises to be just as vigorously contested as any eight-man heave.
Except there may be no referee to adjudge favour for either side; or, even if there is one, he might be gently persuaded to toss his whistle into the nearest river.
The opening shots in the forthcoming jostling for supremacy have already been fired and the battlefield will be a familiar one to those who have witnessed the sport's growing professional pains.
The now 25-year-old sport has reached another dramatic crossroads in its turbulent development - and this could be the most decisive fork yet.
Only the strongest may survive. The trouble is everyone thinks they are stronger than everyone else.
Just as it was in 1995, the burgeoning conflict between the club and country will provide the main narrative.
As with Leo in the movie 'Deep Impact', they all want to be the first to grab the motorbike and win the race to secure their post-apocalyptic futures.
And like all those avaricious supermarket hoarders, rugby's leaders will have no compunction about sacrificing the requirements of the less advantaged; they will be generous only in delivering speeches reeking with spurious sanctimony.
Prepare for a power grab like no other since that momentous Parisian day in 1995.
While there will be much reflection on the health and well-being of consumers - sorry, spectators - and also their products - sorry, players - the bottom line will be the bottom line.
TV and sponsors lead the hierarchy of importance; principal, not principles, are king.
Premiership Rugby in England have declared, with a blissful ignorance worthy of the cathode ray addicted Homer Simpson, that they want to be the first sport back on television.
Their chief battle - aside from sheer insanity, or inanity - will follow the familiar aforementioned script, as their unwieldy demands will conflict with the national union's plans to tour this summer.
In France, the Top 14's secret squabbles about their lucrative league season has unfurled quite spectacularly into the public domain.
And when the comic-book millionaire Mourad Boudjellal, erstwhile major shareholder in Toulon, the uncrowned kings of self-interest, can lay claim to be the voice of reason, you can tell the race for post-apocalyptic spoils will take as yet unknown twists and turns.
Boudjellal fired a broadside at Bordeaux via Twitter, telling their manager that "thousands of French people will die in the coming days so you can shut your mouths on the problem of resuming the Top 14 and the different formulas and your 8 points ahead and the loss of ticket office, we talk about it afterwards."
Other fissures have been exposed within France, too; one club president did declare that this is not the time for a cockfight.
And yet, as sure as a chicken in a coop will alight on the weakest or the sickest member, sport - in France or elsewhere - will be no different to the society which it inhabits in ensuring that the strongest survive.
The Champions Cup released a statement, possibly from a parallel universe, one also perhaps occupied by Premiership Rugby, saying it too was committed to completing this season's competition.
For sure, they didn't offer any grandiose ambition to be the first on TV or stage, perhaps, semi-finals and finals on the same weekend. Or, any continent.
Quite simply, their place in the pecking order is now well-established.
Ireland's status in all this is intriguing - a reminder that the IRFU have already announced pay cuts this week, despite sitting on piles of incoming cash from CVC and Newlands Cross bonanzas to buttress impressive profits.
They have already announced an impressive €500,000 booty for their clubs and more will follow with all income flows removed.
The IRFU's professional league is effectively the PRO14 which, already acknowledging its lowly position, has already pulled down the shutters; the IRFU will be keen for their two competing clubs to complete their European challenge for financial, more than sporting reasons.
But then what of their summer tour? Australia are expecting Ireland.
An Australia who are so bunched that they wanted to add a third Test this summer.
They will now have none and, quite conceivably, their union will be bankrupted.
In rugby's Darwinian, dystopian future, perhaps nobody will be too big to succumb when greed becomes the new virus.