Storm coach Craig Bellamy is prepared for the stern test awaiting his team when the NRL restarts after they received arguably the most daunting revised draw.
With no byes over the upcoming 18 rounds of the shortened 20-game season, Melbourne twice face premiers Sydney Roosters, 2019 grand finalists Canberra, Souths and the undefeated Knights.
Bellamy's men also twice face gritty rivals Manly, who they beat in round one before toppling Cronulla to sit in fourth place when the COVID-19 pandemic forced a shutdown in late March.
However, the premiership-winning mentor said the fact the Storm would play home matches at their usual base of AAMI Park helps offset the challenging draw.
"We sort of treat the draw how we usually do," said Bellamy, whose team take on the Raiders at home next Saturday.
Bellamy: We are very fortunate to be playing home games at AAMI Park
"With the teams we're playing twice - pretty tough teams we've got there ... Obviously with the comp having a break and starting again, we're fortunate we're allowed to play games at AAMI Park.
"That will reduce our travel – how it could have been – if we had to play some of our [home] games in Sydney over the first nine weeks. So that's one really good part of it for us.
"The two long trips this year, we've missed out on them – we don't have to go to New Zealand and we don't have to go up to Townsville.
"So overall, I'd say there's always a couple of little negatives in there but there's always a couple of positives as well."
Bellamy said there has been a delicate balance between getting the squad primed to play again and not pushing too hard after the break.
NRL CEO discusses revised 2020 draw
He revealed a few players have suffered minor soft tissue injuries, with some in rehab, but is confident Melbourne would have all hands on deck come round three.
"We obviously wanted to get some training into them that was specific to the game," Bellamy said.
"To do that with only like ... I think it was only about two-and-a-half weeks of contact - knowing how far to go there with the intent of the actions but also the duration [was tough].
"It was like a pre-season but it was a mini pre-season ... Just organising your training sessions there, how much you do and how much you don't do, that was the tricky part.
"We had a couple of players who had some soft tissue injuries, but hopefully we haven't done too much damage and hopefully we got things right.
"We're hopeful we'll have a full squad by this time next week to pick from or a little bit earlier.
"We knew there were going to be some injuries when we put the foot down with our training - and we got that. But I don't think we've done too much damage."