Collingwood recruit Clinton Young says he has no mental demons from falling over in Sydney's goal square during last year's grand final, but is driven by the pain of losing the match.
Young moved from Hawthorn to Collingwood as a free agent after the grand final loss. He famously fell over while tracking a bouncing ball close to Sydney's goal with the Hawks leading by six points and eight minutes remaining.
Kieren Jack, who was trailing Young, pushed the Hawk out of the way to kick a goal and level the scores. The incident received plenty of attention but Young said it had no effect on him.
"Not really," Young said.
"On the day, Sydney were the better team. There were a lot of mistakes made from both teams.
"It was a high-pressure game. Certainly no issue has affected me at all."
Young, West Coast's Quinten Lynch and Carlton's Jordan Russell moved to Collingwood at the end of last year. Lynch dominated an intraclub practice match last week and will play as a forward and pinch-hitting ruckman.
They will get their first chance to play in the black-and-white jumper when the Magpies face Essendon and the Western Bulldogs in the opening matches of the NAB Cup on Friday night.
The clubs will play two 40-minute matches at Etihad Stadium.
Young said he hadn't watched last year's grand final since Hawthorn reviewed the clash in the days after the match and was determined to have an opportunity to share in premiership spoils.
"Absolutely. Losing a grand final is pretty hard and that will certainly motivate me more this year and I'll be doing everything I can to make Collingwood a better team," Young said.
The Magpies won't be able to select Dale Thomas (foot) and Luke Ball (knee) on Friday night.
Essendon will field a strong line-up, with prized recruit Brendon Goddard preparing for his first match for his new club.Brownlow medallist Jobe Watson won't play as he recovers from a minor knee injury. The Dons will also be without David Zaharakis (quad) and Jake Melksham (broken hand). The Bulldogs have a fit squad, giving them the luxury of selecting a strong team or giving youngsters a chance to play.