TODD Goldstein has backed a three-pronged ruck combination for North Melbourne, saying Majak Daw and Braydon Preuss can play in the same team.

Preuss impressed in Sunday's pre-season win over Hawthorn with 27 hit-outs and three goals.

With the project ruckman firming for his AFL debut, it immediately raises debate about whether he might put Daw out of the senior team.

But Goldstein, North's best and fairest and the All Australian ruckman two years ago, said the trio complement each other.

"I don't see why we couldn't (play together) – we have very, very different strengths and as long as we're contributing and working to those strengths, I don't see why we couldn't," he told SEN.

Goldstein noted that Preuss was proving dangerous in attack.

"Maj has to find where his position is in that," he said.

"But if they can work their forward craft together, I don't see why we can't work well together as a team."

Preuss has worked hard on his fitness, using Goldstein as a measure.

"It's well-deserved for him - he's worked so hard over the last 18 months to get his body in shape," Goldstein said.

"Obviously he's always been a pretty big lad but it's really the way he moves around the ground where he let himself down.

"He's been using me as his rabbit, he's been trying to chase me down for the last 18 months and he's made great ground.

"It's been a test for me to make sure I keep beating him."

Goldstein added the newcomer is very competitive, noting his throat is at a perfect height for Preuss' elbow when they compete in ruck contests.

Meanwhile, Goldstein has admitted to being surprised that the AFL outlawed the 'third man up' in ruck contests.

That is expected to be a big boost for Goldstein, who had a knee injury in the second half of the season and suffered a drop off in form.

"We (were) not the biggest 'third man up' side anyway ... it really works to our hand," he said.

"I can definitely see where it's going to help us."

Goldstein said it was not the 'third man up' that bothered him but that player having a free run at the opposition ruckman.