THE RACE for the finals is heating up with just four rounds of the home and away season remaining.  

Port Adelaide looks a lock for the minor premiership, but there is plenty of interest in the bottom half of the top eight.

THINGS WE LEARNED Big Joe makes a big difference to Dons

Melbourne suddenly has its finals destiny in its own hands, but with just one win separating the Demons from GWS, the Western Bulldogs, Essendon and Carlton, the race looks set to go down to the wire.

Who will make the finals? Check out your club's run home below.

Hawthorn, Sydney, North Melbourne and Adelaide have not been considered

1. Port Adelaide

44 points (11 wins, three losses), 128.4 per cent
Top spot is the Power's to lose now. In grinding out the win against Sydney on Saturday, it delivered Ken Hinkley's side some much-needed extra percentage that will become important later in the season and should only get a top-up against North Melbourne in round 16. Brisbane has a game in hand on the Power, and while the Lions can move to equal top after round 15, will still be behind in percentage. However, one slip up from the Power will have Geelong claim top spot given their superior percentage. Important to have Essendon fixtured at home in round 17, while the Power should also enter round 18 as favourites against the Pies. - Mitch Cleary

The run home
R15: BYE
R16: North Melbourne @ Metricon Stadium
R17: Essendon @ Adelaide Oval
R18: Collingwood @ TBC

2. Geelong

40 points (10 wins, four losses), 138.7 percent
It's all looking rosy for Geelong. Although it might not have been at quarter-time on Friday night. Given its terrific percentage, its top-four destiny appears in its own hands. However, a round 17 bout with Richmond might go some way to determining whether it also boasts a minor premiership at season's end. It will enjoy a break in round 15, before likely starting favourites against Essendon and Sydney. Expect a double-chance come finals time. - Riley Beveridge

The run home
R15: BYE
R16: Essendon @ the Gabba
R17: Richmond @ Metricon Stadium
R18: Sydney @ TBC

3. Brisbane

40 points (10 wins, three losses), 117.4 per cent
The Lions dropped one position after having the bye in round 14, but can return to level pegging with Port Adelaide with a win over Collingwood this week. While they have been shaky in their past two wins over North Melbourne and St Kilda, they will start strong favourites in their final three matches. Win out and a top-two position will be assured. - Ben Sutton

The run home
R15: Collingwood @ the Gabba
R16: Gold Coast @ the Gabba
R17: Sydney @ Cazalys Stadium
R18: Carlton @ TBC

4. Richmond

38 points (nine wins, one draw, four losses), 121.0 per cent
The Tigers have worked their way into the top four and it's hard to see them being displaced from here. They should easily overcome Fremantle and Adelaide, and would seal a top-four berth by beating Geelong in round 17. They still have a bye to come, too, but with a group of high quality players still on the sidelines like Shane Edwards, Dion Prestia and David Astbury, the Tigers are primed for another premiership tilt. - Callum Twomey

The run home
R15: Fremantle @ Metricon Stadium
R16: BYE
R17: Geelong @ Metricon Stadium
R18: Adelaide @ TBC

5. West Coast

36 points (nine wins, four losses), 115.3 per cent
The Eagles' loss against Richmond last Thursday night puts them back in the pack as they chase a top-four position. A win would have gone a long way to securing that place and given them a game-and-a-half buffer over the Tigers with four rounds to play. Adam Simpson's men also don't have the easiest finish to the season. While they'd be expected to be too good for the Bombers and Kangaroos, clashes with the Western Bulldogs and St Kilda could go either way. - Callum Twomey

The run home
R15: Essendon @ the Gabba
R16: Western Bulldogs @ Metricon Stadium
R17: St Kilda @ the Gabba
R18: North Melbourne @ TBC

6. Collingwood

34 points (eight wins, one draw, five losses), 111.7 per cent
Things look pretty good for Collingwood. Its victory over Carlton on Sunday will ensure one more win should virtually guarantee finals footy. It will perhaps make coach Nathan Buckley sleep a little easier at night, given his side still has to play the first-placed Port Adelaide and the third-placed Brisbane. With troops still to return, including important trio Steele Sidebottom, Jeremy Howe and Jordan De Goey, just making it to the post-season is the priority. Once those key names return, who knows how far Collingwood could progress? - Riley Beveridge

The run home
R15: Brisbane @ the Gabba
R16: BYE
R17: Gold Coast @ the Gabba
R18: Port Adelaide @ TBC

7. St Kilda

32 points (eight wins, six losses), 113.3 per cent
The Saints are on the skids after two tight defeats, leaving their finals spot in jeopardy. St Kilda followed its two-point loss to Brisbane last week with a three-point loss to Melbourne on Saturday night, and has the bye next round. It leaves them in danger of only being in the top-eight on percentage at the end of round 15 before they return to face Hawthorn, the Eagles and the Giants. Only Hawthorn can be pencilled in a likely win, with the other two games up in the air. - Callum Twomey

The run home
R15: BYE
R16: Hawthorn @ Metricon Stadium
R17: West Coast @ the Gabba
R18: Greater Western Sydney @ TBC

8. Melbourne

28 points (seven wins, six losses), 111.7 per cent
The Dees have won four of their past five games and pushed back into the top eight after their hard-fought victory over St Kilda in Alice Springs. They might have timed their run well, too, with their destiny in their own hands. Melbourne should beat Sydney and Fremantle in the next two games in Cairns, while Greater Western Sydney and Essendon could be a little bit more line-ball. But they face no side in the top eight in their last run of games, so a return to the finals is firmly on the cards. - Callum Twomey

The run home
R15: Sydney @ Cazalys Stadium
R16: Fremantle @ Cazalys Stadium
R17: GWS @ the Gabba
R18: Essendon @ TBC

9. Greater Western Sydney

28 points (seven wins, six losses), 101.8 per cent
It doesn't take much for everyone to start fearing the Giants again, but the past two weeks have done it. They seriously tested an in-form West Coast at Optus Stadium, before turning in one of their more impressive performances of the year at the same venue on Saturday at Fremantle's expense. Jeremy Cameron was back in the goals, while GWS has unearthed a beauty in Jake Riccardi. The Giants will shape the top eight with their upcoming clashes against the Blues, Demons and Saints and will be confident of securing a finals berth on this past weekend's formline. - Marc McGowan

The run home
R15: Carlton @ Metricon Stadium
R16: Adelaide @ Adelaide Oval
R17: Melbourne @ the Gabba
R18: St Kilda @ TBC 

10. Western Bulldogs

28 points (seven wins, seven losses), 100.1 percent
How much will the Western Bulldogs live to regret throwing away that 36-point lead to Geelong on Friday night? A bye in the next round will be followed by the daunting prospect of a clash with premiership hopefuls West Coast. Should it lose that, it could leave Luke Beveridge's team with the task of winning its final two matches – against Hawthorn and Fremantle – to even put itself in the race for one of the final top-eight positions. However, a handy percentage – which still hovers above 100 – is a benefit for the Bulldogs. - Riley Beveridge

The run home
R15: BYE
R16: West Coast @ Metricon Stadium
R17: Hawthorn @ Adelaide Oval
R18: Fremantle @ TBC

11. Essendon

26 points (six wins, one draw, six losses), 88.9 per cent
Joe Daniher's triumphant return on Thursday evening – coinciding with the Dons' extraordinary second-half comeback over Hawthorn – has buoyed hopes they can make a late run at post-season action. Plenty will have to go right for the Bombers, who need to win at least three of their final four matches to qualify. That's a huge task, given all four remaining opponents ended round 14 inside the top eight. Regardless of that, the pieces are coming together, with Andrew McGrath emerging as a genuine midfield star, Jordan Ridley in red-hot form down back and Kyle Langford taking positive steps. - Marc McGowan

The run home
R15: West Coast @ the Gabba
R16: Geelong @ the Gabba
R17: Port Adelaide @ Adelaide Oval
R18: Melbourne @ TBC

12. Carlton

24 points (six wins, seven losses), 97.1 per cent
Another disappointing fadeout on Sunday was emblematic of a season of frustration for Carlton. While its finals chances aren't necessarily over, David Teague's side might have to run the table from here to give itself a chance. Next week's crucial clash with fellow finals contenders Greater Western Sydney looms large. But even if it survives that test, a final-round encounter with top-four certainties Brisbane is another difficult challenge. It should start favourites against Sydney and Adelaide, but it will be an uphill battle from here. - Riley Beveridge

The run home
R15: Greater Western Sydney @ Metricon Stadium
R16: Sydney @ Metricon Stadium
R17: Adelaide @ Metricon Stadium
R18: Brisbane @ TBC

13. Gold Coast

22 points (five wins, one draw, eight losses), 101.8 per cent
The Suns kept the slimmest of finals hopes alive with Sunday night's thumping of North Melbourne. Although they would be longer odds of making the eight than 2015 Melbourne Cup winner Prince of Penzance, they can start an unlikely charge with victory over Brisbane in the round 16 QClash. Not only does Gold Coast need to win all three remaining games, it must also rely on teams above them losing, which becomes more problematic with so many combatants playing one another. - Michael Whiting

The run home
R15: BYE
R16: Brisbane @ the Gabba
R17: Collingwood @ the Gabba
R18: Hawthorn @ TBC

14. Fremantle

20 points (Five wins, eight losses), 89.1 per cent
The Dockers ran into a rampant GWS line-up on Saturday and an already unlikely finals assault now looks even more so. That loss leaves Justin Longmuir's men needing to win all of their final four games, getting a significant percentage boost and relying on other results. They would fancy their chances against the Kangaroos in round 17, but will be rank underdogs in their other three clashes. The Tigers could extinguish Fremantle's chances on Wednesday night, but there's still been plenty to like about the Dockers in the post-Ross Lyon era. - Marc McGowan

The run home
R15: Richmond @ Metricon Stadium
R16: Melbourne @ Cazalys Stadium
R17: North Melbourne @ Metricon Stadium
R18: Western Bulldogs @ TBC