Dawes has been under the microscope during the second half of the season, and was finally dropped for their Round 23 clash with Essendon, but the versatile forward/ruckman was brought back in for the blockbuster clash with the Hawks.
Also coming in for the Magpies is midfielder Jarryd Blair, with youngster Jamie Elliott missing out on a maiden finals appearance.
Sydney have regained forward Sam Reid for their visit to Adelaide in a qualifying final on Saturday.
Reid and defender Nick Smith are in the 22 to venture to AAMI Stadium, with Heath Grundy (suspension) and Tony Armstrong the players omitted.
The Crows also received a boost to their forward stocks with Taylor Walker returning from a minor hip complaint last week, while midfielder Bernie Vince is back in the side after overcoming knee soreness.
Out for the Crows are Tom Lynch and Matthew Jaensch.
Geelong have sprung a small surprise by bringing in rookie Jonathan Simpkin to replace the suspended Steve Johnson for their elimination final with Fremantle at the MCG on Saturday night.
Other contenders for Johnson's place were the more experience pair of Travis Varcoe and David Wojcinski, but coach Chris Scott rewarded Simpkin's form of late after he impressed against West Coast and St Kilda last month.
The 24-year-old earned his fourth senior game for the Cats.
The Dockers chose to bring in Alex Silvagni as defensive cover for the injured Luke McPharlin, while Kepler Bradley and Matt de Boer were other inclusions for Jon Griffin and Tom Sheridan.
North Melbourne have added in three players from last week's win over Greater Western Sydney to make a squad of 25 for their trip to take on West Coast in an elimination final at Patersons Stadium on Sunday.
The Kangaroos brought in Daniel Wells, Nathan Grima and Sam Wright, while the Eagles have dumped defender Mitch Brown for the clash.Into West Coast's extended squad comes Quinten Lynch, Ashton Hams, Eric MacKenzie and Bradd Dalziell.