Geelong coach Chris Scott has admitted to being bemused at Fremantle counterpart Ross Lyon's reference to the reported Paul Chapman and suspended Steve Johnson almost 48 hours out from the match review panel revealing their findings.
Chapman had his number taken on Saturday for allegedly striking Sydney midfielder Ben McGlynn, and ultimately received a reprimand, while Johnson was suspended by the MRP for bumping Daniel Hannebery.
When Lyon was asked about Fremantle key defender Luke McPharlin being sidelined with a hamstring injury after their 61-point win over Melbourne on Saturday night, he didn't have any qualms in pointing out the Cats may have their own personnel problems in what looms as a juicy subplot ahead of their cut-throat elimination final clash at the MCG on Saturday night.
"I did watch and saw that (Paul) Chapman has been reported and you see the (Steve) Johnson incident so they will be looked at and they have headaches as well," Lyon said.
On Monday, Scott described Lyon's response as 'an interesting way to answer the question'.
"I listen to what Ross says a lot because I really respect him as one of the senior coaches in the competition," Scott said.
"When he said that, I did ask myself why he would say it and hoped to learn a little bit from it.
"If he thinks it's appropriate to comment on those things then I'm happy to back him in.
"I wouldn't (make those kind of comments), but I'm a second-year coach."
Prior to Johnson's suspension, Scott said he would have been surprised if Johnson was cited for his treatment of Hannebery.
The last time Geelong and Fremantle met it was a spiteful affair back in Round 1 in Perth, with Dockers instigator Hayden Ballantyne in particular playing a key role in unsettling the Cats and helping his team to victory over the reigning premiers.
Geelong conceded six 50-metre penalties that night in an undisciplined display, while Ballantyne's tactics not only saw him get suspended for striking Chapman but also ensured Matthew Scarlett got rubbed out for punching the goalsneak in the face.
But Scott said he would be 'amazed' if Fremantle employed similar tactics this weekend.
"I think Ross was quite explicit in his comments post that game that he'd prefer Hayden to play footy because he's an exceptional young player," said Scott who found himself in a verbal exchange with Ballantyne at half-time of that match.
"We think the intensity of a final (means) the stakes will be high enough that both teams will be competing really hard and playing as hard as they possibly can within the rules.
"Discipline's crucial at all times, but you could argue that it's more important in a finals series."I would be amazed if players from either side thought that they could get inside the others' head in a game that means this much."