STAR St Kilda midfielder Jack Steven is confident he'll be fine for round one despite suffering a left ankle injury during the Saints' loss to Melbourne at Casey Fields on Thursday night.
Steven limped off late in the third quarter after his ankle got caught under Demon Jake Melksham, who was sliding into the contest.
The triple best and fairest left the field with the assistance of trainers and was not putting any weight on his injured limb.
He later returned to the bench with ice on his ankle and didn't seem too concerned, but was ruled out for the remainder of the match, which the Demons won by 26 points.
"Yeah I'll be right. It's just a rolled ankle so I'll be sweet," Steven told Fox Footy after the match.
Coach Alan Richardson seemed similarly optimistic at this early stage.
"I told him that he was a drama queen after the game and that he put us all into a bit of a tailspin," Richardson said.
"He's much more likely than not (to play round one). It's a sprain, which is pleasing. Clearly we have to wait and see but it looked worse than it was."
Richardson hinted he preferred the taller forward set-up his side featured on Thursday night with the inclusion of Josh Bruce, who booted three goals, alongside Paddy McCartin and Tim Membrey.
"At times, it looked really effective. Probably looked more effective this week than last (against Carlton) but that's the beauty of practice matches. You get the opportunity to have a look," Richardson said.
However, that could change depending on a variety of factors, with the Saints to face Brisbane at Etihad Stadium in round one.
"It will depend a little bit on form, as to what we go with, and it will depend a little bit on opposition and key defenders etc.," Richardson said.
Melbourne exploded out of the blocks with an eight-goal opening term to take control of the match.
The Saints fought back gallantly to briefly take the lead in the third term before the Dees steadied and kicked away, which pleased coach Simon Goodwin.
"There's some things we've clearly got to work on. Six goals to one in the third quarter isn't ideal, but I thought our start was outstanding. It set the game up for us," Goodwin said.
"The way they steadied at three-quarter time and got the game back the way that we wanted it, we finished off the game really strongly," Goodwin said.
Melbourne had 13 individual goalkickers with Clayton Oliver, Jesse Hogan, Angus Brayshaw, Jake Melksham and Jeff Garlett all slotting two each.
"It's been something that we've been working on for a few years, to create great versatility in our forward half and also through the midfield. We've been able to do that. It's a really pleasing sign," Goodwin said.