Knights boss Phil Gardner has boldly declared the club is in the strongest position in it's 33 year history to become a major premiership force on and off the field and is confident of reaping the rewards over the next few seasons.
On the back of the re-signing of superstar fullback Kalyn Ponga for the next four years and the best start to a season in 18 years under rookie coach Adam O'Brien, Gardner says he has no doubts the club is on the verge of something special after a decade of failure.
"Right now today, I feel incredibly confident about the financial and football future of the Newcastle Knights," Gardner told us.
"We are in a great spot. I think it's the best spot the club has actually ever been in.
"I've been involved with the Knights since the club started and even in the grandfinal years, we've got a better culture here now and overall, a better footy department than we've ever had before with Adam [coach O'Brien] and Bedsy [footy general manager] running things.
"Roster-wise, we are really strong with Kalyn staying long term and Tyson [Frizell] coming next season and our key players are tied up to long deals. We now have a club players want to come to now.
"And financially, we are really secure for the first time in history and with the great support of the community, even with COVID-19, we'll do really well this year.
"Like I said, we are in a great spot. There is a lot to look forward to."
Daring to dream
The Knights' best start to a season since 2002 certainly has fans daring to dream and experts revising season predictions following the club's four wins and a draw from their opening six games.
There is a long way to go but the club's draw over the second half of the season is one of the better runs home among the leading teams and lends itself to even more optimism.
Best stays grounded
Teenage centre Bradman Best says he has heard the State of Origin hype around him over the past fortnight but says he is not reading anything into it.
"I'm keeping myself nice and grounded and not taking any notice of it to be honest," he said.
"I've only played a handful of games in the NRL and Origin - it's a long way off. I just want to concentrate on doing my best for the Knights and trying to keep improving. That's the aim each week."
Buy of the season
He's only played three games for the club but don't be surprised if the highly experienced Andrew McCullough doesn't turn out to be one of the buys of the year in the NRL.
The former Brisbane hooker has been outstanding for the Knights since coming on board a month ago after basically being told by the Broncos he was likely to spend the rest of his time at the club in Reggies.
He's delivered three 80 minute performances, his service from dummy half has been solid and he's made a remarkable 168 tackles, averaging 56 per game, with just three misses. We'll forgive him for the pass that gifted his old club a 100 metre intercept try on Thursday night.
While handing out defensive plaudits, backrower Sione Mata'utia's efforts over the past fortnight should rate a mention. In the Raiders and Broncos' games, the former winger/centre made 97 tackles, missing just two.
The long trek up to Townsville and back on game day to take on the Cowboys next Saturday sounds like a tough ask for the Knights but you could make an argument that it's actually better than a trip to Campbelltown.
After the luxury of an eight day turnaround following Thursday night's win over the Brisbane Broncos, the Knights will fly out of Williamtown at around 9.30 on Saturday morning on a direct charter flight to Townsville that will take around three hours, roughly the same as a bus trip to Campbelltown Stadium.
The game is on at 3 pm and the squad will be on a flight back home to Newcastle well before 7 pm to make sure they beat the 10 pm curfew on all flights into Williamtown that night. Presumably, they'll all be tucked up in bed before 11 pm.
Klem still Top Dog
Daniel Saifiti might be in career-best form right now and getting plenty of pats on the back for the way he has started the season but he knows where he sits in the pecking order at the Knights.|
When it was suggested to him after his performance against the Broncos on Thursday that he now has people jumping on his bandwagon as the new leader of the Knights pack, he shot down the discussion.
"Klem [David Klemmer] is still the big dog. He's still the best prop in the game," Saifiti said. "I've got a lot of respect for Klem. He showed me the ropes. I feel like I've got to support him more this year."
Pushed further, Saifiti said: "It's a bandwagon, it's four games in a row, it's nothing. Klem's been doing this for three or four years so it's his forward pack."
Saifiti's respect is well placed. Klemmer and Tim Glasby can take a lot of the credit for the development of both Saifiti twins over the past 18 months. It's been their influence in showing the brothers how to train and prepare for games but also the importance of nutrition that has seen the Saifitis boys grow as players. They have both trained harder than ever in the pre-season under coach Adam O'Brien and have both dropped weight but become stronger.
As a result, they are noticeably quicker and more agile in defence but are just as difficult if not more so to tackle.
The likes of Klemmer, Glasby and also Aidan Guerra have set a training standard that the Saifiti boys have strived to reach. Both are now seeing the rewards of their hard work.
"The past couple of years, I haven't had a real pre-season and this year, I had a real hard one under Adsy [O'Brien]," Daniel said.
"The performance staff really made us uncomfortable and I think having that real hard pre-season under my belt, I feel healthy and feel fit."
The brothers are also pushing each other to get the best out of themselves.
"Jacob's trying to get the starting spot and he's pushing it and I don't want to give it up either. It's good, it's healthy competition," Daniel said.
"We are so hard on each other. After last week [against Storm], we were honest with each other and said it wasn't good enough - it's what brothers do.
"I thought he was our best player [against Brisbane]. He came on and made a real difference. He's getting credit this year for all his hard work and I'm just so happy for him."