Knights cleanout begins as five exit
Newcastle have farewelled four club veterans and a rookie as they begin a new era under Adam O'Brien following a disappointing end to their 2019 campaign.
The club confirmed at the Knights 2019 awards night on Wednesday that Shaun Kenny-Dowall, Jamie Buhrer, Slade Griffin, Nathan Ross and Zac Woolford would not be at the club next season.
Kenny-Dowall confirmed his exit a couple of weeks ago to take up a deal in the English Super League.
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The former Roosters premiership winner played 277 NRL games for the Tri-colours and the Knights and scored 139 tries.
Kenny-Dowall sits second behind only Anthony Minichiello on the Roosters all-time try-scorer's list with 121 four-pointers.
The former New Zealand Kiwis star joined the Knights in 2017, scoring 18 tries in 53 games over two and a half seasons in the Hunter.
Former Blues representative and Manly premiership winner Jamie Buhrer played 45 games for the club and was thankful for the opportunities the Knights had given his young family.
"It was a move that I'm so glad that I made. I've certainly enjoyed every moment," Buhrer said.
"I've got two children who are Novocastrians, I had the twins here, and my wife and I have really settled and love the place.
"I'm just happy to be a part of this journey, I was happy for the club to have me for this part of the journey."
Ross and Griffin's injury enforced departures came after wretched runs with injury.
Griffin, 28, managed 16 games in 2018, after joining the club from the Storm, but a fourth ACL injury has seen him not play for the club since Round 16 that season.
Cult hero Ross announced his medical retirement from the rugby league back April, after failing to overcome pelvis and groin injuries.
Young hooker Woolford, son of former Raiders and Dragons dummy half Simon, has been released after not getting an opportunity to play first grade in his one and only season at the club.