FOOTBALL folklore is made in finals and Lance Franklin's prediction he would kick a big bag of goals against the Western Bulldogs in 2008 is a classic September tale.
On the morning of the 2008 qualifying final between Hawthorn and the Dogs, Franklin was apparently "disgusted" after reading Dogs defender Dale Morris' claims in a newspaper article that he didn't fear the then star Hawks forward.
Franklin, who had by that stage booted 102 goals for the season, was so riled he declared he would boot eight goals that night.
"I went out for a coffee with him that morning and Dale Morris had done the big back-page spread saying 'I'm not scared of the great Lance Franklin'," his former teammate Campbell Brown recalled on AFL.com.au's Pick A Winner show.
"He (Franklin) read it and he was disgusted with the article. He turned to me and said 'I'll drop eight on him today' and I thought 'oh yeah, who thinks they'll go into a qualifying final and kick eight goals?'.
"Sure enough he did."
Franklin booted 8.2 from 15 disposals in that match – his only final against the Bulldogs – terrorising a Dogs defence which also included Brian Lake.
It remains Buddy's best goal-haul in a final, and it propelled the Hawks to a 51-point belting of the Bulldogs.
Hawthorn famously went on to upset Geelong in the Grand Final three weeks later.
Franklin's prediction could be a cautionary tale ahead of this year's season decider, and Brown is concerned the Dogs don't have an obvious match-up for the superstar Swans champion.
Morris underwent what appeared to be a secret fitness test on Wednesday, while Joel Hamling and Fletcher Roberts have only 58 games' experience between them.
"They don't have a match-up for him and the last three times he's got hold of them with five goals, three goals and six goals," Brown said.
"I'm not sure about that match-up. Dale Morris will be having absolute nightmares about the last time he played on Buddy in a final.
"They (the goals) weren't all (kicked) on Dale, but probably the first five or six of them were. It's got to be nerve-racking."
Lance Franklin celebrates during Hawthorn's qualifying final against the Dogs in 2008. Picture: AFL Photos