Sydney will be without Lance Franklin when the AFL's new entertainers tackle Richmond for the first time since Damien Hardwick teed off at the Swans' tactics in arguably the worst match of 2020.
Franklin and Dustin Martin, two of the league's biggest drawcards, were set to take centre stage in Saturday's eagerly-anticipated MCG clash between two undefeated sides.
Swans superstar Franklin returned against Adelaide last Saturday, marking his comeback after a 581-day stint on the sidelines because of various soft-tissue injuries.
The four-time Coleman medallist pulled up well and trained on Thursday morning.
But it's understood the Swans have made a call to rest Franklin because of their five-day turnaround after this weekend, the travel factor and fact he has only played one game after such a long layoff.
Sydney coach John Longmire has repeatedly flagged that Franklin won't be able to back up every week.
The Swans' reigning best and fairest Jake Lloyd misspoke at a press conference prior to Thursday's training session, wrongly believing Franklin was part of the travelling party.
Sydney have been the league's most potent side in 2021 and earned widespread praise for their ball movement during their impressive 2-0 start.
First-year players Logan McDonald, Braeden Campbell and Errol Gulden have made a huge impact, while fit-again guns Isaac Heeney and Dane Rampe are firing.
It is in sharp contrast to last year when Tigers coach Hardwick critiqued the Swans after a total of seven goals were kicked in a "horrendous" game at the Gabba.
Hardwick quipped "we've got 75,000 people in our forward 50" and "they were no chance of scoring" in his press conference, later calling counterpart Longmire to apologise for his comments.
"It does turn around pretty quickly," Lloyd said.
"I know Dimma (Hardwick) wasn't too happy.
"We've been able to kick a lot more goals in these past two weeks, compared to last year.
"That adds a lot of excitement ...we feel like we've got a really dangerous forward line.
"Richmond were in a similar position four years ago, they came off a pretty bad year and things turned pretty quickly.
"They had a lot of young kids step up and have an impact on games, that's what we're looking to do.
"We look forward to the challenge against the best side of the last four years."
Hardwick predicted a far more entertaining contest this weekend.
"Both sides at their best, we're going to see a great game," Hardwick said.
The Swans travelled ahead of schedule on Thursday as part of the AFL's response to Brisbane's COVID-19 outbreak.
"We're a young group, so we're able to adapt," Lloyd said, having followed a stay-at-home edict this week because the Swans played in Brisbane during round one.
"It hasn't thrown us out too much."