Thanks for nothing, Sydney.
Not only did the Swans steal away Lance Franklin from under the noses of the GWS Giants, and, in turn, from four trips a year to Canberra, they have also put a big dent in the expansion club's hopes for success following the likely demise of the player-allowance scheme.
Unlike the Swans, who have a steady diet of premiership success and an idyllic lifestyle to attract players for close to market value, the Giants don't enjoy such luxury in trying to build themselves from the ground up.
It's simple - the Giants need to be winning to be successful. Fans not familiar with the code won't stay on board if they're constantly seeing their team belted by 100-plus points on a weekly basis.
The Giants need the 9.8 per cent allowance in the salary cap to entice quality players to join and, more importantly, remain in western Sydney once they serve their initial contracts.
It's all fine and well handing out a bunch of high draft picks, but if the players then demand to return to their home state after two or three years, the Giants have to start again from scratch.
We're seeing the same with the Brisbane Lions at the moment.
A cycle of constant rebuilding undermines their efforts.
I'm more than a little bit biased, but how great would it have been to have seen Franklin pick the ball up one-handed on the 50-metre arc in front of the Don Bradman stand, swing around on to his left foot and split the big sticks at Manuka Oval?
The crowd going nuts, fans decked out in orange high-fiving each other and kids kicking the Sherrin from day until night.
Franklin would have been the marketing tool the Giants have been crying out for since the departure of Israel Folau.
Taxpayers of the ACT have a vested interest in how the Giants perform on the field.
The ACT government would be hoping for significant returns from its $26 million, 10-year deal with the Giants. While the expectation was always for short-term pain, removing the salary-cap allowance will harm the Giants improving in the long run.
Better performances on the field lead to bigger crowds, more sponsors wanting to get on board, increased exposure in the media and free-to-air television coverage.
With a constant battle for the sporting dollar in Canberra among the Raiders, the Brumbies and the Giants, the AFL can't afford the Giants to be horrible for an extended period of time.
Their historic first win over the Gold Coast Suns in Canberra delivered them a legion of fans, enough for their crowds at Manuka Oval this year to be on par, if not higher, with what they drew at games in western Sydney.
The Giants are about to head into their third season after a year in which they won just one game.
Recruiting players simply to be marketing tools isn't enough. That's why the arrival of premiership-winning ruckman Shane Mumford instead of Franklin may be an accidental masterstroke.
While Mumford doesn't have the same crowd-pulling ability as the Hawks spearhead, he fills a gaping hole in the Giants' roster.
Jonathan Giles has performed admirably with help from the retired Dean Brogan.
But Mumford gives the Giants a quality ruckman who can deliver their list of up-and-coming midfielders with the first touch of the ball.
At 27, he's entering the prime of his career and will be around when the Giants have a list capable of pushing for the finals within the next three to five years.
All Australian forward Jeremy Cameron and, providing he can stay on the park, No.1 draft pick Jonathon Patton will be main cogs in that improvement.
Having Cameron and Patton up forward will somewhat offset the disappointment of missing out on Franklin.
While the Giants, or any team in the competition, would have loved to have a player of Franklin's freakish ability, it's not worth sacrificing the club's future just for him.
It's not like the Giants didn't have a decent crack. They offered Franklin a contract worth $1.2 million a season, a figure only behind a select few in the competition.
The Giants will always need to pay over the odds to field a competitive team.
The Swans have clearly been exploiting the allowance scheme.
It should be used to hand out an additional 9.8 per cent across all contracts, not just topping up the elite players, as has been the case.
One bad egg shouldn't spoil the entire batch.
For the AFL to continue to become a thriving business, it can't afford to have a lopsided competition. Having the Giants and Suns succeed is vital to ensuring the AFL pushes its brand nationwide.