NIC NAITANUI'S family and friends in Fiji will be watching when he achieves West Coast life membership, but there is one person he wishes could be at Optus Stadium – his mother. 

Atetha Naitanui had been a rock for the star Eagles ruckman before passing away in 2015, and his joy at reaching 150 games against Gold Coast will be tinged with sadness that she won't be there this Saturday night. 

"That's probably the sad part, not having my mum with me for my 150th," Naitanui said. 

"I've got my brother and what not here to support me along in that respect, but I guess she's been there through the whole journey and the hardships I faced early days.

"To see me get to this point, there's not too many of us boys (Michael Walters and Chris Yarran) that got drafted in that one street to get to 150 – I'm the first of the lot – so I reckon she'd be really proud." 

A live stream of the Eagles' clash with Gold Coast will be beamed into Naitanui's village, Suvavou, if the electricity is connected. 

"There was a little cyclone that just went through there, so it knocked out a few of the houses' power, but they'll find a way," he said. 

"For them to see my 150th, they're all happy and they've been calling me all week.

"It's exciting for everyone as a whole." 

Naitanui, who will share his celebration with 200-game veteran Mark LeCras, has lived his life in the spotlight since before he was drafted via pick No.2 in 2008.

The 27-year-old spent New Year's Eve on Rottnest Island and felt he had "more selfies than the quokkas", but he has learnt to embrace his celebrity in the fishbowl of a two-team town.

"Sometimes it is frustrating and annoying, but there's worse things you could be doing and I think having that in the back of my mind, someone asking for a photo isn't as bad as someone coming and abusing me, so I'll take that any day," he said.

Naitanui's exposure didn't wane during his 19 months on the sidelines either, with his knee a constant talking point in Perth after he went down with a ruptured ACL in round 22, 2016.

The spring-heeled 201cm big man has made an outstanding return this year, and his influence on West Coast has never been more obvious, despite Naitanui only averaging about 55 per cent game time.

"I've always been pretty confident in coming back and playing some good footy because I've had that extended break," he said.

"If I came back the end of last year I wouldn't have been as confident, probably.

"I've been playing some good footy on limited minutes. That will slowly progress.

"We'll go through this week and I'll play a bit more game time.

"Obviously having two ruckmen, with Scotty Lycett as well, my time has to be limited to some extent."