Fremantle skipper Matthew Pavlich faces another week of intense treatment in a bid to be fit for Sunday's crunch AFL clash with North Melbourne at Etihad Stadium.
Pavlich almost didn't play in Saturday's 22-point victory over Richmond at Patersons Stadium after tightness in his hamstring and achilles tendon kept him off the training track all week.
The 276-game veteran was clearly hampered against the Tigers, and needed numerous stints on the bench to receive treatment on his hamstring, calf and groin.
With the injuries and soreness starting to add up, Pavlich is likely to be a week-by-week proposition for the rest of the season.
That's not good news for eighth-placed Fremantle, who need to win their remaining two games against North Melbourne (Etihad Stadium) and Melbourne (home) to guarantee a finals berth.
There is a chance one win might be enough to secure a top-eight spot, but the Dockers (12-8) don't want to take any chances.
Pavlich remains Fremantle's most important player, with his 60 goals so far this season putting him in the box seat to claim the Coleman Medal.
And with so much on the line over the coming weeks, Fremantle coach Ross Lyon is hopeful the club's medical staff can work their magic once again to ensure Pavlich plays out the remainder of the season.
"He's just been having hamstring tightness and achilles tightness that he's managed for years," Lyon said.
"We had specialists come in and work with Matthew (last week). The sports science division and medical team just find a way to get players up."
The match against North Melbourne looms as a season-defining clash for both clubs.
The in-form Kangaroos (13-7) will be aiming to secure a home final, while Fremantle need to win in order to keep the fast-finishing Blues (11-9) and free-falling Essendon (11-9) at bay.
In contrast, Richmond (9-11) are now officially out of the finals race.
Five losses by 10 points or less proved to be their undoing, but Richmond coach Damien Hardwick said his team would learn valuable lessons from those defeats.
"We think half of those will turn into wins next year," Hardwick said.
Fremantle's 13.16 (94) to 11.6 (72) win over Richmond sparked a mini war of words between Hardwick and Lyon over the late inclusion of Dockers ruckman Aaron Sandilands.
Sandilands, originally listed as an emergency for the match, was rushed into the starting line-up with less than 15 minutes before bounce down after Jonathon Griffin injured his groin in the warm-up.
Hardwick doubted whether the injury was legitimate, and questioned whether the late change was in the "spirit" of the game.
But Lyon hit out at any insinuations his club had pulled a swifty.
"There is no ruse here. If anyone's calling us liars, they'd want to be really strong and have strong evidence," Lyon said.
Fremantle will assess the fitness of midfielders Tendai Mzungu (shoulder) and Nat Fyfe (ankle) over the coming days, while Richmond defender Ben Griffiths is in doubt to take on Essendon on Friday night after being knocked unconscious in a head-first tumble to the ground.