It is just another game - but then again it is not.
Trying to find the blend between the two is what the Highlanders need to do tonight in Dunedin.
Play as well as they did in the regular season and also lift it a level to acknowledge it is playoff time. Sounds simple, really, but if only it was, and there are 23 Chiefs who want to do exactly the same thing.
Highlanders co-captain Ben Smith said the performance came down to getting things right at the right time.
"It's just about making sure our plans are really clear and how we are going to go out and play this game," he said.
"There is a bit of excitment in this group. Obviously it is into knockout rugby and that is exciting in itself. Just trying to nail down the plan is a big part of this week.
"Composure will be a massive part. There will be crucial moments in the game and we've got to take those moments. I'm getting the right vibe from the boys. They are just really excited to get out there and give it a good crack."
Smith, who watched from the stand at Carisbrook when the Highlanders hosted their only other playoff game in 1999, is a key man for the home side. He has been in top form all season.
Many of the Highlanders' best attacking movements originate from the 29-year-old. He knows the onus is on him, but it is something he is not going to hide from.
"We'll look for opportunities. The way the game is played in the stadium, it is really fast and you look to move the ball. There are good opportunities for both teams to have a crack.
"It is really exciting to have the Fijian boys outside me, knowing how they are pretty dangerous. You just have to give them the ball in their hands and they're away."
Between them, the established Highlanders outside backs have scored 21 tries this season and will be looking to add to that tally tonight.
Three of those tries were scored the last time the two teams met in Invercargill, when the Highlanders romped to a 36-9 victory.
That was only three weeks ago but Smith said that game would mean little when the sides ran on to Forsyth Barr Stadium tonight.
"This is different. It is about whoever turns up on the day. And we know that. We have taken a bit of confidence out of the games so far but come Saturday we know the right attitude and really fronting up will be needed.
"Because whoever turns up and plays the best rugby will progress to the next stage of the tournament."
The Chiefs have a different team than the one which put up the white flag late last month.
Liam Messam is back, as is Sonny Bill Williams. Coach Dave Rennie has gone with a massive pack and may look to put the heat on up front, hoping to swamp the Highlanders' front eight at both the set piece and the breakdown.
The Highlanders must be awake to this. They got monstered up front in last year's playoff appearance and can not afford a repeat.
Smith said the side has learned from that game.
"We took a wee bit out of the game ... just how crucial playoff rugby is and getting things right. It's awesome to have another chance this weekend. You've got to expect a massive increase in intensity. Bigger collisions. Everyone will be hungry to put their team in a good spot."
Key Highlanders matches
v Waratahs, Dunedin, March 14
A round five victory over the defending champions, which came a week after they beat the Chiefs in Hamilton and showed they could put two excellent performances together against quality opposition. An indication that they were right in the mix after a horrible draw gave them a bye in the first round. Tom Franklin, Ben Smith and Waisake Naholo scored converted tries.
v Crusaders, Christchurch, April 11
This was an upset after the Highlanders lost to the Crusaders at home in their first match.
Lima Sopoaga was yellow carded in the first half, but the Highlanders dug in and were behind only 14-13 at halftime before finishing well over the top of the Crusaders.
A Naholo double and another Ben Smith try gave them the impetus.
v Chiefs, Invercargill, May 30
An incredible bonus point shut-out of the Chiefs at Rugby Park in the deep south. The Chiefs were unable to create any sort of attacking threat in the miserable conditions, but the Highlanders thrived on the wind and rain, scoring four tries — the usual suspects Naholo and Ben Smith dotting down along with Patrick Osborne and Richard Buckman.