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Rumoured Targets 3

Burwood

Bench
Messages
4,855
Is there such thing as a proper depth player these days? Anyone with first grade experience who spends time in NSW Cup seems to agitate for a release and ends up very quickly in the Super League or another club.

If you look at our NSW Cup side from last round, I think there’d be less than 10 NRL games in the entire 17 man team, and nearly all of those would belong to Jenkins.
 

perverse

Referee
Messages
26,219
Is there such thing as a proper depth player these days? Anyone with first grade experience who spends time in NSW Cup seems to agitate for a release and ends up very quickly in the Super League or another club.

If you look at our NSW Cup side from last round, I think there’d be less than 10 NRL games in the entire 17 man team, and nearly all of those would belong to Jenkins.
Yeah it doesn't really exist in the professional era. If you can get a contract elsewhere, there's too much money on offer if you feel blocked from first grade in your current arrangement.
 
Messages
765
Tuala is a fantastic example of a depth player, and great clubman. Gogger another example - Gamble same.

Can rise to the occasion few times a year to get you through some injuries to the run on team, but not a permanent fixture in first grade of a successful team challenging for a Premiership.
 

Burwood

Bench
Messages
4,855
Tuala is a fantastic example of a depth player, and great clubman. Gogger another example - Gamble same.

Can rise to the occasion few times a year to get you through some injuries to the run on team, but not a permanent fixture in first grade of a successful team challenging for a Premiership.

Tuala isn’t really a depth player. With the exception of 2023 due to Young’s meteoric rise, he’s on track to play nearly every game he’s been available for since he joined the club in 2020.
 

Yosh

Coach
Messages
11,491
I might be the only one but I reckon Gamble is good enough to be a starting 5/8th in a Premiership winning team (if they have a really dominant 7 like Cleary or DCE).

Tuala is great. Probably his best season for us and to be fair we haven't missed Young too much. Imagine we had Jenkins playing every game. Their terror.
 
Messages
765
Tuala isn’t really a depth player. With the exception of 2023 due to Young’s meteoric rise, he’s on track to play nearly every game he’s been available for since he joined the club in 2020.
hence I wrote - "but not a permanent fixture in first grade of a successful team challenging for a Premiership"

Tuala is a great depth player. Gamble same. They are fair to middling, and we arent winning a Premiership any time soon with those players. Both would not be in any top 4 team.
 

Yosh

Coach
Messages
11,491
Random but our defense coach is McDermott right? Our defense has improved leaps and bounds since he came. Parra's job is up for grabs, does he go? I hope he stays because I still firmly believe he is the reason behind our good form and not AOB.
 

Rod

Bench
Messages
3,441
Now that you mention it, our defence is currently 5th best in the comp so they're definitely doing something right on that end.

I feel like the decision-making by our centres and wings in particular is generally very good.
 

perverse

Referee
Messages
26,219
Now that you mention it, our defence is currently 5th best in the comp so they're definitely doing something right on that end.

I feel like the decision-making by our centres and wings in particular is generally very good.
I've been impressed by their decision making and their trust in our cover defence sliding when the outside guys do jam in too. It's all working very well, they all seem to get it.
 

Woody90

Juniors
Messages
1,485
I wouldn't be sure the Knights are interested, considering who his manager is might be an attempt to create a market for him.

Yeah this might be true. I don’t get the impression we have 600k lying around next year given the comments from the club. Even if Gamble left he’s on less than half of that.

Apparently he wants to play centre.
 
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Woosh

Head Moderator
Messages
1,077
Myles Martin will make the move to Canberra. Picture Jonathan Carroll
He already boasts eight ex-Knights players in his top squad at the Canberra Raiders. Now Ricky Stuart is about to make it nine.
Young Newcastle Jersey Flegg captain Myles Martin, a member of the Knights top 30 senior squad this season, will quit the club at the end of the year to link up with the Raiders coach in the national capital after agreeing to a three-year deal.
He'll join other former Knights Joe Tapine, Danny Levi, Hudson Young, Pasami Saulo, Tom Starling, Zac Hosking, Simi Sasagi and Zac Woolford at the Raiders.
News of Martin's departure comes less than 12 months after he played lock for NSW under-19s against Queensland. He also captained Newcastle's SG Ball side to last season's grand final.
Martin, who just turned 20, has been highly rated since being poached from the Parramatta Eels a few years ago and the club tried unsuccessfully to re-sign him at the end of last year.
But after off-season leg surgery, Knights insiders say his progress has stalled this year and we're told there was only lukewarm interest in retaining him before the Raiders swooped. The suggestion is that other retention priorities had jumped him in the queue.
Time will tell if he comes back to bite them.
Intriguingly, it is unclear if Martin's signing could potentially open the door for a possible player trade prior to June 30 with the Knights having signed Raiders winger James Schiller for 2025.

Maps finds his way back


With Bradman Best sidelined for up to six weeks with a grade two hamstring tear, the door has opened for young centre Krystian Mapapalangi to put a couple of injury-prone seasons behind him and re-ignite his NRL career.
The 21-year-old debuted and played two NRL games in 2022 but has hardly been sighted since due to injuries. He's a big chance to play on Friday week against the Bulldogs ahead of out-of-favour Tom Jenkins. Another option for coach Adam O'Brien is switching back-rower Dylan Lucas to the centres.

Will loyalty sway Davey


Knights coach Adam O'Brien is hoping loyalty to the club that gave him a shot in the big time will play a part in any decision flying fullback David Armstrong makes on his playing future.
The off-contract Armstrong has been a revelation since taking over from the injured Kalyn Ponga, playing a big role in Newcastle's four-game winning streak that has lifted the Knights into the top eight. His form has more than justified the Knights decision not to grant him a release at the start of the season when English club Leigh offered him a contract.
Not surprisingly, O'Brien wants to keep Armstrong longer term, revealing the 23-year-old has been made an offer to extend his current deal.
"There's an offer in for him and I'd like to think he's really happy here,"O'Brien told us. "It's been a whirlwind month for him but he's handled it really well and everyone's really proud of him.
"There'll be others looking at him for sure now but you'd like to think that loyalty will play its part. We've stuck with him and given him his opportunity so I'm hoping we can come to an agreement."
Money could be an issue with Newcastle's 2025 salary cap already stretched. But in the Knights favour is that most rival clubs already have established fullbacks so he'll have no guarantees if he departs. Playing wing when Ponga returns is clearly an option. "He can play more than one position using that speed," O'Brien said. "Guys that are quick can finish off some stuff and while he's not a big body, he's only had one full off-season with us."

Walsh showdown on radar


Injured Knights captain Kalyn Ponga has pencilled in a showdown with Queensland Origin fullback rival Reece Walsh in Newcastle in just under two months for his return from a serious foot injury.
Ponga is on target to resume against Brisbane on July 20. He is set to miss a further six games with the Knights having two byes in that period. Ponga hasn't played since suffering a Lisfranc rupture in his foot during the 36-12 loss to the Bulldogs in round 7. With another bye, the week after the Brisbane game, there is a chance his return could be delayed a further fortnight.
 

PhilGould

Bench
Messages
3,354
Toohey’s News
- Knights keen on Blaize Talagi but believe he’ll stay at Parramatta. AOB sees him as a 5/8.
- Will try to bring back Jonah Pezet if he reaches free agency in November as expected.
- Final roster spot likely to go to someone promoted from within. Early release for Schiller unlikely.
- Chiefs won’t release Tyrone Thompson so he won’t join the Knights until the start of pre-season in November. Also says Knights are stepping up negotiations to extend Leo.
- Knights had a small offer on the table for Myles Martin for a couple of months but pulled it before he signed with the Raiders.
 

macavity

Referee
Messages
20,443
Toohey’s News
- Knights keen on Blaize Talagi but believe he’ll stay at Parramatta. AOB sees him as a 5/8.
- Will try to bring back Jonah Pezet if he reaches free agency in November as expected.
- Final roster spot likely to go to someone promoted from within. Early release for Schiller unlikely.
- Chiefs won’t release Tyrone Thompson so he won’t join the Knights until the start of pre-season in November. Also says Knights are stepping up negotiations to extend Leo.
- Knights had a small offer on the table for Myles Martin for a couple of months but pulled it before he signed with the Raiders.

Pezet back would have to be a long shot surely. He isn't getting a run at the Storm any time soon though.
 
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