Melbourne remain hopeful defender Jake Bowey will overcome a suspected collarbone injury and be available in the early stages of the new season, while another Demon could find himself in MRO trouble.

Bowey was unable to see out Thursday night's 22-point loss to Sydney after sustaining the injury following a heavy collision with Swan Justin McInerney in the third quarter of the game.

The Demons defender's "courageous effort" left him in pain on the SCG turf before being assisted off the field, with Bowey not brought back into the match for the final term.

Speaking post-match, senior coach Simon Goodwin praised Bowey's bravery, revealing the premiership backman will undergo scans to determine the full extent of the injury.

"We'll have to get that looked at. It's probably looking more like a collarbone at this stage. We just need to make sure we get some scans and get that looked at," Goodwin said.

"It was a pretty courageous effort from him. He put his body on the line and came off second best, but that's what we love about him.

"He's disappointed but he's in high spirits. Sometimes (collarbones) can get looked after pretty quickly. He's optimistic about only missing a short amount of time."

The Demons are set to have small forward Kysaiah Pickett back from his one-game suspension to start the season, while tall forward options Tom McDonald, Tom Fullarton and Ben Brown could all be in consideration for selection, with the latter to press his case with a stint for Casey on Friday.

Swingman Harrison Petty is eyeing a return against Hawthorn in Round 2, with the defender-turned-forward dealing with a toe issue.

Melbourne forward Charlie Spargo could gain some scrutiny from the AFL's Match Review Officer for an off-the-ball incident involving Sydney's Isaac Heeney in the third term of Thursday night's loss.

An outstretched left arm from Spargo made high contact with Heeney as the pair looked to avoid a collision, with the Swans star floored as a result of the incident before being awarded a free-kick.

Images via Fox Footy

The officiating umpire suggested the incident was accidental, however the MRO could view Spargo's actions as a reportable offence, potentially grading the conduct as 'careless'. Further gradings of high contact and low impact would result in a fine for Spargo.

Despite the defeat, Goodwin was buoyed by Clayton Oliver's return, with the star Demon collecting a game-high 30 disposals in his maiden showing of the season.

Following a heavily-interrupted summer, the four-time best and fairest winner looked comfortable competing at the elite level and showed no signs of fatigue or fitness concerns.

Goodwin said there were never guarantees Oliver would be ready in time for Opening Round, with the premiership coach paying credit to his gun onballer.

"It was a typical Clayton game, he was pretty tough around the clinches and the contest," Goodwin said.

"He's still got some work to do, he probably fumbled the ball a little bit at times. But he'll just evolve and get better the next few weeks, but it's just great to see him happy, healthy and back in the program and we'll get him back to his best pretty quick."

"There were no guarantees throughout the summer (he would play), but he's done everything right to put himself in this position. We're happy he's in a great space. He's healthy, he's happy and he's contributing well to our footy club."

Melbourne return to Victoria for a Round 1 clash against the Western Bulldogs at thge MCG next Sunday, March 17 at 1:00pm (AEDT).