Super Rugby will survive the one more year it has to in its current, crooked format that doesn't quite make sense.
But it will be only just and good luck to those who have to pick up the pieces and try to regenerate it when it does finally return to being a straight round-robin format in 2021.
The danger for those charged with making Super Rugby financially vibrant again is that it may be too late.
The damage that has been caused after years of stupid and constantly changing formats and the introduction of unimpressive and unloved teams has maybe stuffed Super Rugby's growth prospects for ever.
It might be that from 2021, with fewer teams and a simple concept of every team playing every team, that crowds start to return to stadiums, sponsors pay a little more to be involved and teams across the competition start to see red turn to black on the balance sheet.
But it takes an optimist bordering on fool to see that actually being the case as Super Rugby has to absorb one last major punch next year and it is one which will inflict the sort of damage that will add years on to any possible financial recovery.
New Zealand, which has had to hold up Super Rugby as if it were Atlas, has had to make a few major concessions by allowing Sam Whitelock and Brodie Retallick to both miss Super Rugby next year so they can play in Japan, with the latter also not going to be available in 2021.
It is thought that Beauden Barrett will miss much of next season to rest and then play in Japan in 2021.
Certainly for the locks, they are heading to Japan not just for the money, but because they both want to be around for the 2023 World Cup but fear they wouldn't make it if they have to play another four seasons of Super Rugby.
And that's because the Kiwi teams have been damaged by the format of having to play each other as often as they do.
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Retallick and Whitelock would be the two most durable athletes in the country and they are having to escape Super Rugby for a period because they genuinely fear it will grind them into mediocrity.
The fact NZR has granted them permission to miss Super Rugby is a tacit admission that they agree the competition doesn't serve their best players as well as it should.
And when a national body isn't willing to give Super Rugby its full support, why should anyone else?
Super Rugby attendances fell six per cent this year and it's hard to see why a similar fall, or one sharper, won't be experienced next year as it won't just be New Zealand missing its best players.
The situation in South Africa is going from bad to worse with yet another massive clear out of their best players coming after the World Cup.
South Africa is already having to pick almost half of its Springboks squad from players based overseas because so many of them don't want to play in Super Rugby and with 10 of the current Bulls squad, including Handrie Pollard, Duane Vermeulen and RG Snyman heading offshore, the quality will plunge.
The most worrying aspect for Sanzaar is that while the weakness of the Rand has been a major factor in driving players in search of dominant currencies which can be converted for a King's ransom in the Republic, the added travel burden of playing the Sunwolves in Singapore or Tokyo has been the final straw for many South African players.
There will be no relief from that next year as the Sunwolves will still be involved – which in itself makes for a farcical situation.
Japan's sole representative know they won't be in Super Rugby come 2021 and will be this dead man walking sort of figure next year, seeing out their final year with no incentive or particular reason to be involved.
Their only impact will be to persuade yet more South Africans to head to foreign lands.
Australia is also going to see a major post World Cup exodus that will weaken its already inexperienced Super Rugby squads. Will Genia, Samu Kerevi, Bernard Foley, Quade Cooper, David Pocock and Rory Arnold are all leaving and then there is the whole business of how much Israel Folau has damaged interest in the game.
If 2019's defining image was rows of empty seats even at play-off games, then in 2020 it might be empty stands that we all remember and while Super Rugby will survive, the road back to commercial viability looks long and torturous.