An efficient display of textbook pressure rugby league paved the way for the Knights to take a 22-12 victory over the Bulldogs at ANZ Stadium.
A strong long kicking game from five-eighth Jarrod Mullen was the difference for the Knights as they continually forced the Bulldogs to bring the ball back off their own line.
The Bulldogs were untouched by Origin selection, while the Knights were missing key playmakers Kurt Gidley and Danny Buderus, as well as inspirational forward Steve Simpson. Keith Lulia was a late withdrawal for the Knights, with Junior Sau rushed in to make his first-grade debut at centre.
Had it not been for some disappointing ball handling and ill-discipline, the Bulldogs would have held a handy advantage at the break. Instead, the Knights fed off the Doggies' 11 first-half errors and made the most of their chances inside the Dogs' 20, taking a 10-6 lead when the halftime siren sounded.
The 50-50 calls went against the Bulldogs and, considering this, they seemed in reasonable shape just four points down. Bulldogs coach Steve Folkes had just thee words to say to his players at the break: "Hold the ball."
Sau was physically robust on attack and defence on the left hand edge. He showed great strength to barge over for his first try and was jogging on the spot for his second after Cooper Vuna provided the initial burst and assist.
Handling errors continued to plague the second half before Adam MacDougall showed his brute strength to muscle over the line in the 68th minute to grab his side the two points, just a week after suffering a shock loss to the Warriors at home.
The Bulldogs snared a late consolation try when former Panther Nick Youngquest ran off a slick short ball from Ben Roberts after a neat Daniel Holdsworth chip kick but it was too little too late.
Matt Hilder finished with 51 tackles, James McManus ran for 186 meters and Jarrod Mullen's kicking game was a class above the Bulldogs.
Knights 22 (Sau 2, McManus, MacDougall tries; Naiqama 3 goals) Bulldogs 12 (Utai, Youngquest tries; El Masri 2 goals). HT: 10-6.