Seven years ago Wayne Bennett handed a skinny teenager named Sione Mata'utia his NRL debut and on Sunday he will reap what he sowed at Newcastle all those seasons before.
Amazingly, an elimination final against South Sydney is Mata'utia's first final after 123 NRL games.
And it will come against his former mentor.
Back in 2014, Mata'utia was a self-confessed 'confident kid' but he sat shaking with nerves in the sheds prior to his first NRL game for the Knights.
That was until Bennett sidled over and gave him the words of encouragement the Knights utility has held onto for each game since.
Bennett told the 18-year old: 'there's a reason why you're selected and that's because of the way you play and your ability'," Mata'utia told AAP of that day.
"I said to him, 'so I need to come back to that?'
"And he said: 'exactly, that's all you need to do. Do what you do best.'
"Just like that my nerves were gone.
"He just gives you this look and that's all you need."
The Knights beat Sydney Roosters 16-14 that day and after the game Bennett declared this little-known teenager would captain the side one day.
"Looking back on it now that's pretty big from a coach like him," Mata'utia said.
"I remember at the time thinking it was cool but I just wanted to play another game of footy.
"I always feel fortunate to have played under Wayne and be given that opportunity."
After seven tries in as many games that season for the Knights, Mata'utia went on to become the youngest ever to play for Australia.
The 24-year-old is a father of two now and no longer is he scoring tries on the wing, he's a second-rower.
And aside from a few games as one of the youngest ever skippers in the NRL when the club was at its lowest in 2017, he has not fulfilled Bennett's captaincy prediction.
He is, however, the heart and soul of the team.
"I'm just taking it all in. It took me seven years to get here and I don't know how long it's going to take again," he said.
"I'm waking up pretty early to get as much of that feeling in as I can.
"I'm so excited and I'm so excited for the town as well."
As the last remaining player of Bennett's Newcastle era, Mata'utia knows all too well how Souths will turn up at ANZ Stadium on Sunday afternoon.
Whether it's a word or a look from their mentor, the side will be ready to run through walls for him.
And the Knights will be ready to meet them on the other side.
"We're excited as a team to take him on," Mata'utia said.
"We've been through games where our backs are against the wall.
"Not being expected to win, that suits us. That's in our favour."
STATS THAT MATTER
*The Knights 62.8 per cent win record against the Rabbitohs is their best against any current team and they will be looking for three straight wins against the Rabbitohs for the first time since 2006-07.
*Since the re-introduction of the top eight in 1999, the Rabbitohs have the worst week one finals record, winning just two from seven games.