Adelaide captain Taylor Walker knows the romantic line: the Crows winning the AFL premiership to honour a slain coach.
But while Phil Walsh had started Adelaide’s journey to a grand final, Walker says Don Pyke should get the credit for finishing it.
“This is Pykey’s team,” Walker told reporters on Friday.
“I have got the utmost respect for Pykey. He has done an amazing job.”
Walker said the eve of Saturday’s grand final against Richmond wasn’t the time to dwell on the legacy of Walsh, who coached the Crows in a dozen games before being stabbed to death in July 2015 by his son Cy.
“Obviously, we have been through a fair bit and a lot has been spoken about it,” Walker said.
“Our group is so strong, so resilient, that I have got a lot of trust and belief in the 22 (players) that are going to run out tomorrow.”
Then, Walker used some Walsh-speak, expressing confidence “that we will get the job done” – a favoured saying of the coach.
Walsh’s widow Meredith will be among the MCG crowd for the premiership decider, as a guest of the Crows.
But Walker said Walsh won’t be mentioned in the inner sanctum before the game.
“We won’t speak about it all. It’s all about what we do to beat Richmond tomorrow,” he said.
Walker was also reluctant to expand on whether becoming a premiership captain would be reward for Walsh appointing him to the leadership role.
Pyke has taken Adelaide to the finals in his two years in charge since replacing Walsh.
But, like his captain, Pyke was solely focused on the here and now, rather than the past.
“We spend a long time, and I’m not just talking this year, preparing for this day,” Pyke said.
“And that is the opportunity we get tomorrow.
“Our guys, like the Richmond guys, clearly want to win.
“For mine, in big games, in finals, it comes down to a number of things. And I won’t go into those now but they are things we talk about as a group.”