Turns out New Zealand Rugby was the expert at 'flattening the curve' long before anyone had any idea what that meant.
It also turns out that the national body may have to reconsider re-introducing workload management protocol next year so it can bash down that curve after injuries spiked in Super Rugby Aotearoa.
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For some peculiar reason New Zealand doesn't log and monitor injury rates with the same transparency as other major nations, leaving these things to be publicly monitored by nothing more scientific than which players are unavailable when it comes to being selected for higher honours.
Based on this crude formula, Super Rugby Aotearoa was a near cataclysmic force – vengeful and destructive in a way previous iterations weren't.
When the teams for the inter-Island clash were picked this week, All Blacks captain Sam Cane, Dane Coles, Ngani Laumape and Scott Barrett weren't available. Others such as Cullen Grace, Pari Pari Parkinson, Tom Robinson and Quinten Strange weren't either and technically nor was Luke Jacobson such was his lack of football due to injury.
Super Rugby Aotearoa was the shortest version of the competition in history and yet it wreaked medical havoc, which almost certainly would have been worse had the final game between the Blues and Crusaders not been cancelled.
As a secondary source of evidence, the players themselves provided consistent testament that they see Super Rugby Aotearoa in its current five-team format as unsustainable.
Partly their concerns are about the economics of it all and the latent sense that everyone might get quickly bored of such intimacy. What was novel in 2020, might become familiar in 2021 and breed contempt.
But really what they fear is that the intensity of facing their rivals every week in games that are played with such pace and ferocity as to wonder whether the weaker Six Nations sides would be able to cope if they were involved, is going to break them.
Injuries are not always linked to bad luck. Mostly they are, but the statistics gathered in scientific studies suggest that the likelihood of injuries occurring increases when players are enduring heavy training loads and consistently playing.
This is essentially why most major rugby nations – some successfully some not – try to impose total limits on how many games their top players can play.
Anecdotally, the All Blacks have come to believe that most players can just about manage three tough tests in consecutive weeks, but few can push on to do four.
Super Rugby Aotearoa was asking players to do four near test intensity games, take a week off and then do another four and that's why NZR now finds itself in the classic position of being between a rock and a hard place as it plans for next year.
What made Super Rugby Aotearoa work was its intensity. It was the best versus the best, no enforced stand down periods for the top players, no rotation policies from the coaches and less pre-ordained emptying of the bench after 55 minutes.
This was largely why the Blues sold in excess of 150,000 tickets – a figure that equates to one-third of all the tickets sold for Super Rugby games in New Zealand last year. This is why there was a 65 per cent jump in Sky's viewership and why rugby clubs around the country have seen their bars fill up with new and familiar faces on a Saturday afternoon.
For the last five years everyone has bemoaned the arrival of weak teams in Super Rugby. The likes of the Sunwolves, Rebels and short-lived Kings had no appeal: they watered everything down, sucked up cash that wasn't really there and led to NZR introducing player welfare strategies that weren't so much designed to prevent the best players from being injured as to prevent them from being drained by such a long campaign.
Super Rugby Aotearoa gave fans everything they wanted but it took chunks out of the players and herein lies the conundrum.
Somehow a competition has to be created next year that retains the same intensity and authenticity as 2020, but doesn't result in the same volume of players going snap, crackle or pop.
If NZR imposes a hard and fast diktat to try to flatten the curve, authenticity will be lost. Fans can't be duped into believing they are seeing the best versus the best when half the probable test squad is watching from the stands.
No one wants to go back to the old world where Super Rugby was sacrificed to ensure the All Blacks had fresher legs at the end of their season and yet no one wants to see the national team weakened by injury and fatigue to such an extent as to be left vulnerable in the final months of the year.
But really, given the fragility of NZR's balance sheet and the opportunity to rebuild Super Rugby as the beating heart of the professional game in this country, there is no choice but to see this as a Gordian Knot.
NZR has to cut through it by not imposing any limits on player involvement next year and trust that the All Blacks will have the depth and resilience to manage.