"PETER would be pretty happy tonight."
Peter being Collingwood icon Peter Daicos and those words being delivered by Magpies coach Craig McRae after two of his stars with the same surname produced another stellar effort on Sunday, amid a season stacked full of great performances.
Nick and Josh Daicos will compete for Brownlow Medal votes in round 15 after they helped the Magpies return to the top of the ladder with a thrilling two-point win over Adelaide.
Both are on track for maiden All-Australian blazers and are set to play key roles in helping Collingwood do what their old man did in 1990.
With Jordan De Goey serving the second week of a three-game suspension, Nick played as a pure midfielder and finished with 37 disposals – the 10th time he has reached 30-plus this season – 14 contested possessions, nine score involvements, eight clearances and a crucial goal.
Josh continued to show why he is one of the premier wingmen in the game in 2023, amassing 33 disposals, six inside 50s, six clearances and 604 metres gained in front of 65,930 fans.
"They had 70 possessions between them," McRae marvelled in his post-game press conference. "Just their ability to do their job. It is nice to see both of them smiling after the game, they are enjoying their footy.
"I thought Josh was influential on the scoreboard the way it looked at half-time, he was significant the way he played his role. His possessions had value.
"We thought we'd go into this game and play Nick as a mid. He is an incredible athlete. What's lost in the spectacular possessions and the goals and stuff is how good a runner he is. He is remarkable."
After winning nine games by single digits during McRae's first season at the helm, including seven of the final eight games of the home and away season, the Magpies stood up late again on Sunday to beat the Crows by less than a goal for the fourth time in the past five encounters between the two sides.
McRae said the Magpies will need to address what went wrong in the third quarter when Adelaide kicked seven unanswered goals, but he will go home and enjoy the last quarter on Sunday night.
"Ideally we didn't put ourselves in that position, but credit to the Crows, I thought that third quarter was outstanding. You've heard it all before, I suppose. We just want to win. There is a great will to win. There are a number of players that just don't want to give up," he said.
"I'm looking forward to watching that last quarter. I tend to do a red wine replay after a win – only one glass, drink responsibly – I'm looking forward to seeing all the little efforts. I mentioned after the game the will to compete and scrap and fight, all the things we want to be proud of and see in us, I'm looking forward to watching them because there was many.
"I'm sure there are things in that third quarter – I know in my head already – that I will want to tidy up. They are not big things, they are little things. Small margins in this game. We get ourselves a two-point victory so it doesn't take much to give opposition help."