Long overdue a reprieve from the football gods, a twist of fate has put Ryan Griffen on the cusp of a dream comeback in Saturday's AFL semi-final.
Griffen, who has been declared fully fit and available for selection by GWS's medical department, shapes as a likely replacement for injured midfielder Josh Kelly.
The Giants haven't given up hope of Kelly facing Collingwood at the MCG but he remains in extreme doubt.
Griffen has endured a rotten run on the injury front since joining GWS in 2014, playing a total of 54 games in four seasons.
"I have so much respect for the way he goes about his training and football. He's amazing. I'd love to see him back," Giants captain Callan Ward said.
"He really deserves to play finals. It'd be a huge lift for the club and for him personally.
"He's had a pretty tough run for a few years. He hasn't deserved that."
The expansion club was concerned at the start of this year that Griffen's ankle injury might prevent him from getting on the park in 2018.
There were fears Griffen, out of contract beyond this season, may have played the last game of his career back in round 22.
The former Western Bulldogs skipper tweaked his hamstring in the third quarter of that Sydney derby.
"He'd be sitting there thinking 'has it all come to an end?' but I don't know how bad it is," coach Leon Cameron said at the time.
"I'd punt on Ryan Griffen in a final ... he's a big-game player."
The 32-year-old's injury history means he would be a selection gamble.
But Cameron is no stranger to rolling the dice, having successfully recalled Brett Deledio, Zac Williams, Toby Greene and Matt de Boer in last week's elimination final.
Ward and Griffen lost preliminary finals in both 2009 and 2010 with the Bulldogs.
They left Whitten Oval, joined GWS then had their hearts broken in 2016 by the Dogs in a dramatic preliminary final.
Griffen's ankle injury meant he missed the Giants' 2017 preliminary final loss to Richmond, who like the Bulldogs also went on to win the flag.
"I was getting quite frustrated last year, it was probably the hardest year I've had to deal with in terms of injury," Griffen said in June.
"There were some dark times.
"I'm pretty close to Lids (Deledio) because I know what he's going through. We've fed off each other."
Australian Associated Press