An 8.8 refurbished, with new gears, locker, and fabrication will be around 1000 bucks or more. Much less if you can weld. A 44a from a JY maybe 300 maybe less. Then you are gambling on if the carrier bearings are still good. Limited locker options, they come with 3.73 gears, and you will need to address the drive shaft length. Otherwise it bolts right in. So 300 for the 44a, say 100 for wheel bearings, rear drive shaft maybe 150. Assuming that the carrier bearings are in good shape you will still be around 550- 600 bucks into it with no locker. With an Aussie locker it's another 300 bucks so now you are at or close to 1000. In the long run the 8.8 would be a better option. More aftermarket and parts are easy to find. Also you would want to truss it. I forgot that's like another 350 bucks for the kit.
The only advantage of a 44a would be if you had a v8 ZJ with a 35c or blown 44a you could pretty much just swap it in and not have to worry about gears, welding, or drive shaft. That's not so in your case so your money savings would be nothing.