Lance Franklin has wound back the clock for the Swans in what could have potentially been his final AFL game.
Franklin is yet to announce his intentions for 2023, as he comes out of contract at the end of this season.
Reports earlier this year had Franklin needing to take a hefty pay cut to remain on the Swans roster should he wish to play on next season.
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But given his form in the preliminary final against Collingwood on Saturday, Franklin’s still got what it takes.
Despite opponent Brayden Maynard’s best efforts to rattle the Swans superstar in the first term, Franklin simply helped his side to a 21-point quarter time lead.
And he exploded in the second term, with two early goals.
“If you’re going to put Maynard on Bud, that’s the kick. You can’t just put it up because Maynard’s a strong boy. Get Bud moving, use his height and athleticism to jump at the ball,” commentator Luke Hodge said.
“Maynard was having a joke trying to rub the oil off Bud’s arms.
“I’ve seen some strange things occasionally – I don’t think I’ve seen a defender try to rub the oil off the forward’s arms!” Luke Darcy added.
Franklin was so dominant in the second term, that Collingwood coach Craig McRae made the move and pushed Jeremy Howe to the big man.
But it didn’t halt the Swans’ scoring prowess as they kicked the best half time score against the Magpies in 2022.
“There was a little bit of argy bargy – Franklin’s been in this all game,” Fox Footy’s Leigh Montagna said.
“I think he’s trying to lift his young side – that he’s physically and mentally in this battle.
“Clearly Franklin’s taken the honours this first half.”
By half time, Franklin had seven disposals, five marks – two of those contested, five score involvements and two tackles to go with his two goals.
Fox Footy’s David King praised Franklin’s dominance, as he rated first in a number of categories.
“He really invested himself physically in this game,” he said.
“He was just so dominant inside 50.”
Franklin’s second goal saw him move into equal third for Sydney’s all-time goal scorers with 467 – level with Barry Hall.
Just Michael O’Loughlin (521) and Bob Pratt (681) sit ahead of Franklin.
He also sits fourth in the all-time finals goal scorers with 73 – one behind Jack Titus and five behind Jason Dunstall.
The great Gordon Coventry is the all-time record holder with 111 goals.
Franklin overcome a brutal start to the prelim at the SCG, including two big collisions with defender Darcy Moore and being pushed into the fence by Maynard.