NOT taking anything for granted. 

Nic Newman wasn’t sure he’d ever reach 100 games, with the mature-age recruit having a different pathway than most to the AFL. 

Getting drafted to Sydney at the end of 2014 at the age of 22 after a stint with Frankston, Newman had to wait for two years to make his AFL debut, before he was eventually traded to Carlton at the end of 2018 on deadline day.

Then, in 2020, he suffered a ruptured patella upon football's return from an extended Covid layoff which saw him out of the game for a whole season.

However, Newman persevered, and now he's set to play his 100th AFL game on Sunday in Perth. It's just reward for the no-nonsense defender who is highly regarded at IKON Park as an unofficial leader that has been named Best Clubman in two of the last three years.

“I had a few moments where I thought I might not make 100 games, so I haven’t thought too much about it until I got through the game on the weekend. I’ll reflect a bit this week,” Newman said. 

“It’s a small milestone but it’s pretty cool to say I played 100 games – it’s something I’m proud of.

"I think I have plenty of footy left in me: who knows how long that is, but I love being here so it will work itself out."


Newman will be sharing his century of football games with teammate Charlie Curnow, with the duo having a deeper connection than just sharing a milestone game. 

Both recovering from long-term knee injuries in the hub during 2020, Newman said it was ‘special’ to share this moment with Curnow, knowing what they’ve been through together and the hours spent in rehab.

“Me and [Curnow] had long-term knee injuries at the same time, I spent too much time with him in rehab. He’s a lot of energy, all over the joint sometimes – it’s pretty cool that we ground away in rehab together to now playing 100 together,” he said. 

“I think rehab is pretty tough at times and in the hub - away from families - it was harder to get away from footy up there. To have someone to talk to about it, and relate to how I’m feeling was nice, and it’s cool we both get to play 100 together.” 

Whilst injury is never welcome, Newman had the pleasure of gaining a few personal and professional lessons whilst he was recovering. 


Not only did he learn a bit about himself, but he threw himself into coaching with the team's reserves in the hub, which ignited his love for coaching. 

Now sharing facilities daily with the AFLW group he helped coach in the two 2022 seasons, Newman was pleased with how much the two sides are integrating, allowing his teammates to get more involved and connected to the program. 

“I think I’ve become a bit more selfless and changed my role, which has helped as well,” he said. 

“It’s been great [having both programs in]: we’re extremely lucky that we have such a great facility that can accommodate both programs easily.

“We’ve been getting used to using the facilities at the same time and it’s been great for our integration. With Covid, it was challenging for a few years to do stuff together, but this has really helped.”


An unofficial leader of the Club - twice voted Best Clubman by his peers - Newman has been instrumental on and off the field since he arrived at IKON Park, basing his leadership on some key pillars at Carlton. 

A no-nonsense defender who consistently plays his role, the 30-year-old said he wasn’t thinking too far into the future at the moment, focusing only on the next game. 

“It’s all pretty comfortable at the moment – I think I have plenty of footy left in me, who knows how long that is, but I love being here so it will work itself out,” he said. 

 “‘Vossy’ has been awesome for me, especially around the leadership side of things, he’s helped me grow in that space a lot. I love playing under him, he’s been great for the Club.”