He was the new kid on the block surrounded by some of the biggest names in the NRL.
But this time around Canberra Raiders captain Jarrod Croker feels more comfortable keeping that kind of company.
He likened his two attendances at NRL finals launches to the two respective seasons he's been there.
The first was in 2016. It was just his second season as Raiders captain as the Green Machine enjoyed a rollercoaster ride into the finals.
This year was his second. And he felt their more consistent game plan had them where they belonged. In the top four.
He was at this year's final launch on Monday, ahead of their qualifying final against the Melbourne Storm in Melbourne on Saturday.
"I guess I do [feel more at home] a bit, it's a bit more composed. It's a bit like our whole season," Croker said.
"It's just been composed and feels like we belong up in that top four.
"I guess being here in '16 was a bit like our season. It was such a rollercoaster ride and we won the last 10 games going into the finals.
"It was just all adrenalin filled. I certainly feel a lot more composed this time around.
"That's just a reflection of how we've been going throughout the season."
The Raiders welcome back a raft of players to face the Storm. John Bateman, Jordan Rapana, Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad and Sia Soliola were rested.
Joey Leilua returns from suspension, while Joe Tapine is hoping to overcome his injured ribs.
It means there'll be a reshuffle in the backline from the team that lost to the New Zealand Warriors on the weekend.
Plus some tweaking in the forwards with Hudson Young facing suspension for an alleged eye gouge.
Either Nick Cotric or Bailey Simonsson will slot on to the left wing alongside Croker, but the Raiders co-captain was unsure who it would be.
"Nick and Bailey, it will be one of those two I guess, obviously with [Leilua] coming back," he said.
"It's a really good headache to have to be honest.
"We get the blokes who missed last week back and Joe Tapine's there as well with a chance.
"We haven't had that depth for a couple of years now and to be able to have a headache like that with Nick and Bailey, and a couple of others around the middle. I'm not sure who it will be."
Croker was also unsure how Tapine was tracking in race to be fit for the first week of finals.
Tapine injured his ribs against the Storm three weeks ago and hasn't played since.
He was named in the 21 last week and will likely be in the 21 when Raiders coach Ricky Stuart names it on Tuesday.
"I think he's ok. Ribs are fickle. He could go out and hurt it [Tuesday]," Croker said.
"I think he's been quite good. We've had the luxury of giving him a couple of weeks off to get it right.
"I'm sure if you asked him you won't be able to get the jersey off him. He'll be pretty keen to play."
NRL QUALIFYING FINAL
Saturday: Canberra Raiders v Melbourne Storm at Melbourne, 5.40pm.