The Sharks have booked a preliminary final berth after James Maloney kicked a late penalty goal to hand his side victory over the Raiders at GIO Stadium.
The Gold Coast Titans' impressive 2016 campaign has come to an end at the hands of the Broncos at Suncorp Stadium on Friday night.
The opening weekend of the finals wraps up with the only all-Sydney clash of the weekend as the in-form Panthers host the always-dangerous Bulldogs.
12 months ago North Queensland knocked the Storm out of the finals and then went on to win the premiership and the rematch shapes as an epic blockbuster.
The Sharks came within a win of the minor premiership but instead will start as underdogs against the red-hot Raiders in Canberra on Saturday.
Predicted at the start of the year to finish at opposite ends of the ladder, the Broncos and Titans meet in a sudden-death final for the first time this Friday.
The Penrith Panthers thumped the Manly Sea Eagles 36-6 on the back of a superb first-half performance at Pepper Stadium on Sunday night.
The Parramatta Eels ended their season with a 40-18 win over the Warriors at a rain-drenched Mt Smart Stadium on Sunday.
The Canberra Raiders ended the Wests Tigers' season with a 52-10 win at Leichhardt Oval on Sunday, securing a home final in the progress.
Melbourne have taken the JJ Giltinan Shield as the minor premiers on the back of a dominant defensive display against the Sharks at AAMI Park on Saturday.