Melbourne captain Cameron Smith is racing the clock to emerge from his sick bed ahead of Friday night's Qualifying final against the Roosters.
The Storm are desperate to snap their finals losing streak but face a Roosters side chasing a 13th straight victory after clinching the minor premiership.
The Roosters have learnt from a disappointing exit from the finals in 2014 and are primed to win their second premiership in three seasons.
Melbourne produce the goods, the Roosters' incredible run, Newcastle's unwanted history and the Bulldogs leave it late. The key numbers that defined Round 26.
Young Roosters halfback Jackson Hastings will carry the experience he has gained filling in for Mitchell Pearce in recent weeks into the finals series.
The Roosters will clash with the Storm, Bulldogs will take on Dragons, Broncos host the Cowboys and the Sharks will meet the Rabbitohs.
Roosters coach Trent Robinson says he's pleased with what winger Shaun Kenny-Dowall showed in his first game in two months after a strong return.
When the Roosters shot out to a 30-0 half-time lead against the Rabbitohs it wouldn't have been a surprise to see coach Trent Robinson rest his star fullback.
Despite a scoreless second half the damage was done in the first as the Roosters trampled a listless Souths side. Here are five talking points from the match.
A dominant Sydney Roosters outfit have claimed the JJ Giltinan Shield for the third year in a row after trouncing rivals the Rabbitohs at Allianz Stadium.