THE sports romantic in me would love to see Mitchell Pearce deliver an emphatic 'up yours' to his many knockers in tonight's State of Origin decider. To put egg on the face of the hordes who dismiss him as a great club player, but not up to the pressure of Origin.
A tiny part of me would love to see the Newcastle Knights halfback produce a performance so dominant, it forces critics to hurriedly log onto Twitter and hammer the delete button.
But as a proud Queenslander, I want his very soul, and those of his Blues teammates, delivered on a platter.
Who can forget the epic spray Maroons opposite number Johnathan Thurston sent in 'Junior's' direction after the Maroons slaughtered the Blues 52-6 in the 2015 series decider at Suncorp Stadium?
"Oh, I just let Pearcey know he should probably get a photo with Wally (Lewis)'s statue (outside Suncorp Stadium) because that's the closest he was going to get to holding the shield," Thurston said.
To his record JT recently described the on-field interaction as "definitely not my finest moment", but Pearce finally gets a chance to prove him wrong after missing the first two games of the series through injury.
The Blues have a horrendous record in deciders throughout Origin history, losing the past seven, their last victory way back in 2005.
Ending that drought and securing his first series win personally would be an ideal way for Pearce to rewrite how he will be remembered on the game's biggest stage once he retires.
Unfortunately though, the 30-year-old is essentially stuck between a rock and a hard place.
Unlike when he played Maroons teams stacked with greats like Thurston, Billy Slater, Cameron Smith, Greg Inglis and Cooper Cronk, the Blues are heavy favourites to win.
In other news...
They're coming off an emphatic 38-6 belting in game two at Perth, and Queensland are without superstar fullback Kalyn Ponga.
The decider's in Sydney, the Blues are almost unbackable at $1.36 and have a wealth of attacking talent across the park, including giving James Tedesco and Tom Trbojevic freedom to roam virtually as two fullbacks.
Long story short - if the Blues win, it's hardly a shock and they've simply met the expectations of most.
If they lose - it turns into a nightmare for Pearce who once again becomes the scapegoat for yet another failed campaign.
Before a lynch mob flies down from Queensland, I certainly will be barracking for the mighty Maroons tonight.
But my ideal scenario is for the Canetoads to pull off one of the biggest upsets in Origin history, despite Pearce having a blinder.
We're a passionate sporting country, but at the end of the day it's just a game of football.
Should Pearce fail to deliver and the critics spend Thursday gloating "I told you so", it's an important fact to remember.