Outgoing Knights coach Nathan Brown is confident he will find another NRL coaching role thanks to "selfish" rivals "that make short-term decisions and ruin footy clubs".
Brown and Newcastle CEO Phil Gardner addressed the media on Wednesday morning for over 30 minutes, the day after the club announced the parties would go their separate ways at the end of 2019.
The Knights mentor backed both the Newcastle to continue their resurgence under the watch of his replacement, and himself to get a job at another rebuilding club in what will be interpreted as a thinly-veiled swipe at Wayne Bennett.
Brown was charged with lifting the Knights out of the Tinkler-Bennett era that saw them finish last three years straight after Bennett's 2014 exit, a scenario he sees repeating elsewhere across the game and keeping him in a job.
"There'll always be jobs for people like me because there's plenty of selfish coaches who make short-term decisions and ruin footy clubs," Brown said.
Brown: Life isn't full of fairytales
"There'll be another club that will have an old roster that's been ruined and someone will get me to come in and try and fix it up because that's the job that I do.
"The realities of that job? I may not get the benefit of it. But I get paid well and I live a good lifestyle.
"When I first came to the club I said to my wife, the starting spot where we were, we were definitely going to run last for the first two years, I said: 'the reality is, the fairytale probably won't be me, that's just the nature of the job'.
How will Knights players respond to Brown's departure?
"… Allan McMahon and David Waite, they laid the foundations for Newcastle Knights to win the premierships in 2001 and 1997.
"They put all the work in and left the club with the Johns brothers and Paul Harragon and great systems in place. They started that."
Brown said he was leaving on good terms with the club and Gardner, having turned around a "horrible" drinking culture he says existed when he first arrived in the Hunter in 2016.
When questioned on NRL.com's report that Brown had brought his future to a head in the belief Newcastle had begun sounding out potential replacements, Gardner said he personally had not spoken to any rival coaches prior to the Monday meeting that decided Brown's future.
"If they haven't spoken to me then they haven't spoken to the club," Gardner said.
"And I've not spoken to anyone yet."
He indicated the Knights board will now put together a shortlist of potential contenders, with current Storm assistant Jason Ryles and Roosters' staffers Adam O'Brien and Craig Fitzgibbon leading contenders, though Fitzgibbon has ruled himself out.
Analysing Nathan Brown's exit from the Knights
Both Brown and Gardner were adamant the timing of his exit, announced with three weeks remaining in the regular season and with the Knights still in finals contention, gives Newcastle the best chance of going further in 2020.
"I made a hard decision very easy for the boss. I like him and he likes me. It was time," Brown said.
"I knew the time was right and he knew the time was right."
"We're extremely lucky that Nathan came to me and said 'you need time'," Gardner said.
"That's why we're doing it now. It gives us time to really test the market, see who's out there and get our systems right."