It's not often one single decision can have a profound impact on history. Typically, big events, history-changing episodes, are shaped by a number of actions over a period of time.
But New Zealand's recent rugby history is a little different in that the origin of the last decade of unprecedented All Blacks success can be traced to one specific decision.
One specific and at the time highly contentious and divisive action changed the course of history.
That's much easier to see now. It's much easier now to make the argument that retaining the All Blacks coaching and leadership group that failed so badly at the 2007 World Cup was the smartest move made in the last 12 years.
No one would have a bar of that in the weeks, months and even a year after Graham Henry and his coaching team were re-appointed in late 2007.
The mood back then was soiled with anger, driven by a sense of entitlement that World Cup failure allowed for endless public venting that had to end with the coach's head on a stick.
The All Blacks way was to throw out everyone associated with World Cup failure and start again. There was an almost contrived theatre about the process in previous years where the baying masses, metaphoric pitch forks in hand, would chant for the coach's head and cheer raucously when they got it.
And as the campaign in France had been the worst of them all, the lust for blood was extreme.
When the New Zealand Rugby board genuinely surprised everyone by voting 7-1 in favour of retaining Henry, the anger was as much to do with the refusal to follow convention as it was driven by the sense that NZR had picked the wrong man.
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It didn't help that the global financial crisis was gripping the country at about the same time and with petrol prices having crashed through the $2 mark, the mood was genuinely volatile when the All Blacks lost two consecutive Tri Nations tests against Australia and South Africa.
No one in Canterbury needed to be reminded that it was Robbie Deans, fresh from taking the Crusaders to yet another Super Rugby title, who was at the helm of the Wallabies.
Amid such high emotion, there was never any prospect of the decision to re-appoint Henry being viewed rationally or objectively.
Even when the All Blacks won the 2011 World Cup, there was still a near moronic element who grumbled that it was only by one point in the end and the stuttering and nervous performance in the final was yet more evidence that the wrong call had been made retaining Henry.
Those who argued the All Blacks choked on the night, earned themselves a PhD in missing the point: choking was what the All Blacks did against France four years previously when they lost.
What they did in 2011, albeit by the skin of their teeth, was show they had found the mental resolve and resilience to scrap their way to a victory.
The All Blacks leadership group didn't have any answers when they were under pressure in 2007. Largely the same group, and particularly captain Richie McCaw, had enough four years later to get the job done.
That one point margin might as well have been 100 points. It was huge and testament to the enormous changes that had swept through the team and the wider New Zealand landscape since 2007.
McCaw, who led the All Blacks in 2007 and in 2011 and 2015, said this week that it was the pain of defeat that changed the course of history for him.
By keeping McCaw, Henry and the coaching team at the helm, the All Blacks were able to plot a different path.
They were able to take what they had learned in 2007 and adapt it, improve it and grow from it. Defeat forced them to re-evaluate what was working and what was a waste of time.
It hardened them. It chastened them. It focused them. It drove them and it's undoubtedly true that it was only in 2008 that the All Blacks truly began their journey towards being a high performance, professional team.
It was post 2007 that the All Blacks realised that to stay on top of the rugby world, they had to work harder and smarter than everyone else.
They thought they knew that already but losing the way they did in Cardiff to France showed them that they didn't really.
The attitudes that were fostered in early 2008 have stayed with the All Blacks to the present day.
They grew a wider base of rugby knowledge by retaining those who failed in 2007 and that has grown in the last eight years.
Some will say this journey most likely would have happened without retaining Henry.
But it's a weak and baseless argument as the cycle of chopping failed World Cup coaches had never previously grown the All Blacks.
The constant change saw the All Blacks repeat their mistakes and fail to build any depth of intellectual capital.
As soon as any particular coach began to feel he was learning something about the job, he was kicked out and the next bloke would come in, having to start all over, knowing nothing.
By the time he learned something, he was booted out and so on and so forth to the point where had the pattern not been broken in 2007, the All Blacks would probably still be chasing a second World Cup victory rather than a fourth.
Arguably, though, what the retention of Henry did was to redefine the way the All Blacks and NZR saw adversity.
For too long defeat at a World Cup was seen as a terminal, shameful business.
No one could see any good that could come from it or accept that those who had the taint of it on them could still be the right people to guide the team.
That has changed and while the All Blacks still hate losing, they have come to see it, be it a World Cup or in any test for that matter, as an inevitable and valuable part of their growth.
To be, as was the case prior to 2007, so definitive and belligerent about defeat was not only restricting, it was bordering on arrogance.
Defeat, it seemed, was seen as something that happened to other teams...not the All Blacks who carried on between 1995 and 2007 as if they had a divine right to win the World Cup.
What's in play now is a healthier, more balanced, measured, less fearful approach to test football from the All Blacks.
They are just as committed to win as they ever have been, but they know, because they have been given the chance to see this, that when they lose, it will be an opportunity to build their knowledge and mental strength and heighten their chance of winning in future.