Why go after Lance Franklin when you already have someone who could be even better?

Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley likened Greater Western Sydney key forward Jeremy Cameron to the Hawthorn star after the Giants gave the Magpies an almighty scare on Saturday at the MCG.

Cameron kicked his first seven-goal haul - including the Giants' opening five of the game - and was clearly best afield as Collingwood eventually won by 40 points.

GWS still led 21 minutes into the third term, but Collingwood then kicked six of the game's last seven goals to win 15.16 (106) to 10.6 (66).

The Giants, who are winless this season, are trying to entice Franklin north at the end of this season with a massive offer.

But Cameron showed on Saturday he is already a star and could become an all-time AFL great.

"I've likened him a bid to a Buddy Franklin type who can impact in the air, but does just as much damage on the ground with his follow-up," Buckley said.

"That's a big rap, but when a bloke's kicked seven goals on you out of 10 he's obviously performed pretty well."

Cameron's seventh goal was his best.

It also put GWS ahead for the last time late in the third term and took his season tally to 50.

In a Franklin-esque effort, he withstood pressure from opponent Lachlan Keeffe, deftly paddled the ball in front of him and then goalled on the run from an acute angle.

The Giants' Kevin Sheedy, speaking after his last game at the MCG as a player or coach, said Cameron was the equal of any player he had mentored.

"He's a very, very, very, very good player early doors," the veteran coach said.

While Cameron lit up the MCG, it was nearly a horror night for the out-of-sorts Magpies.

They face a massive three weeks as they try to stay in the top eight, with games against Essendon, Sydney (away) and top side Hawthorn.

"We've got to go up another couple of rungs to even be able to compete," Buckley said.

"That first half is as poor as we've played all year."

Collingwood fans booed their team from the field when they trailled by 16 points at halftime.

Buckley was very animated when he coached from the boundary line during the second quarter.

The Magpies' four-goal burst at the start of the third term was critical.

Buckley was confident Luke Ball would return next week after he was a late withdrawal with another calf problem.

Ben Reid also rolled his ankle during the game.

Meanwhile, Buckley dismissed sharp criticism of captain Nick Maxwell from Matthew Scarlett in the former Geelong star's new autobiography.

"If I was heading for the fiction section I'd probably head for 'Specky Magee' (a children's AFL book) before I went for 'Hold The Line'," Buckley said.