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Knights coach Nathan Brown declared the mutual decision to depart the club at season's end was justified following Newcastle's 46-4 capitulation to Wests Tigers in Campbelltown on Saturday.

The Hunter-based club suffered their most dire loss of the season playing for a finals berth against an opposition who were without Robbie Farah and Moses Mbye.

They conceded eight unanswered tries to suffer their worst-ever loss against the joint venture. 

Brown denied the timing around announcing his departure played a part in the demoralising performance, referring to his time at the Dragons and St Helens where he finished on positive notes. 

"The first half was a reflection of why me and the boss honestly came to a solution we did last week," Brown said.

"When you're in these situations, when you get to the end of the road with where I'm at, you're either going to get an outstanding performance or what we got in the first half.

"What we did in the first half was a long way behind what that group of players can get to and it's disappointing for lots of people."

Brown said he had no pre-game thoughts the side had shown signs of producing a poor performance leading into the clash.

"I had no idea, the boys trained quite well on Wednesday and trained well again yesterday but game day is different," he said.

"My feeling was it would be really good or not good at all. That's what happens in these situations.

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"[But] I've been in these situations before at the Dragons and we went on to make the finals. And at St Helens we went on to win the grand final."

The Knights remarkably still remain a slim mathematical chance for the finals despite the loss but their hopes are virtually dashed if the Sharks or Broncos manage to win at least one of their remaining two matches.

Newcastle face bottom-placed Gold Coast next week on Old Boys day and Brown indicated he planned to blood further debutants before his tenure at the club comes to an end.

Latest rookie Bradman Best was solid on NRL debut but the 18-year-old was let down by his teammates and Brown indicated he wouldn't be paying the price for the team's overall performance. 

"I thought he was terrific, if you put it all into facts that he's 18 and we were badly beaten," Brown said.

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"For where he's at, I'm confident the new coach will be happy with what he's got there. I don't see any reason why [he won't play for the remainder of the year].

"I'll have an honest conversation with the leadership group and Phil [Gardner].

"We'll work through it like adults and resolve what we need to resolve. I'd like to think we can come up with a far better performance."

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National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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