It is rare for one selection to reveal as much as Quinn Tupaea's presence in the No 12 jersey does for the first All Blacks test of 2021.
The inside thinking was that David Havili, the more senior and more rounded contender, would start at second-five against Tonga. But instead, it is Tupaea, younger and certainly less polished, who has been preferred.
The reasons why are as clear as they are simple. Head coach Ian Foster likes the fact that Tupaea has such clarity about his own skill-set.
The 22-year-old is not labouring under any misapprehensions about what he's bringing to the table – which is well considered angles of running, high impact and selfless ball carrying and strong instincts on what to do once he has broken the line.
Tupaea is not likely to be labelled showy. His game is not going to be described as elaborate or subtle and while it is probable that Foster would like for those descriptions to be true in time, right now he's more than comfortable with the relatively narrow portfolio the youngster offers.
As has been flagged, second-five has been a problem position for the All Blacks and often the best way to fix a long-running issue, is to strip everything back and reposition the emphasis on the absolute basics.
Perhaps, hidden in the elevation of Tupaea is an admission that the various previous, recent occupants of the All Blacks No 12 jersey have overdone the thinking or unwittingly complicated things by bringing expansive skill-sets to the role, unsure how to use everything they have.
Neither Jack Goodhue nor Anton Lienert-Brown, the two who have played most recent tests there, have ever seen themselves as specialist second-fives and both would likely agree that when they wore 12 they played with the mentality and mind-set of a 13.
This is something that is highly unlikely to occur with the more rustic Tupaea, who on what he has shown so far with the Chiefs, appears to be a grip it and rip it sort of player.
He gets that a 12 can have a storming game by doing nothing more than hammering over the gainline and stopping the other bloke wearing the same number from doing just that.
And that's what makes his selection so intriguing and one which carries a wider significance.
Perhaps it's just as true to say that the entire All Blacks squad has been a little guilty at times in the last few years of over-thinking what is, in essence, a simple, simple game.
What so often differentiates the All Blacks from every other team is the enormity of their collective skill offering. Across the board, from prop to fullback, there is a requirement to be able to pass and catch; to offer more than the job description says.
But maybe what has happened in these last few years is that the entire team has occasionally been focused on adding intricate and clever additional components and in chasing these game-changing skills, they have fractionally lost sight of their basic execution.
Foster, made almost precisely this candid revelation in explaining his first selection of the year, saying that he felt the All Blacks had suffered an erosion in their micro skills in the past few years.
His view is that the team needs to reset on that front: to re-examine and improve their basic running lines.
To tidy crucial technical aspects of their work so their tackling is more effective; their pass and catch sharper and more damaging.
What is true of a 12 applies to plenty of other positions - carry the ball forward, pass accurately, tackle hard and technically well and it's likely to end in a job well done.
To get those improvements, the whole team has to follow the same path as Tupaea and strip their individual games back to focus on those basic but critical skills.
So one selection does way more than reveal the current midfield pecking order. It goes deeper into what sort of vision Foster has for the All Blacks and where he feels they need to be setting their sights in 2021.
Tonga, loaded as they are with club players and provincial hopefuls, are not likely to offer a huge amount of resistance at Mt Smart Stadium.
But that is of little significance to Foster who was at pains to say that his expectations are that he sees his team play like one that is serious in its ambition to restore itself to the number one spot in the world rankings and more importantly, that the All Blacks look capable of actually getting there.