The angst surrounding Sonny Bill Williams just may be unfounded.
According to the Chiefs, Williams is fit, fired up and ready to face the Hurricanes in New Plymouth on Saturday night.
And, contrary to recent reports, there has been no pressure applied by the All Blacks coaching staff, apparently anxious for the second five to sit out the remainder of the campaign and rest a troublesome back injury.
Williams has not been seen on the field since the start of May, scratched in the days leading up to his side's first outing against the Hurricanes. The lumbar problem he suffered, initially thought of as innocuous, has since created issues elsewhere in his body and seen him miss the Chiefs' last four matches.
It has also seen Williams' short-term future the subject of speculation across the Tasman, with a suggestion floated last week he would play no further part in the Super Rugby season.
The All Blacks were wary of protecting their prized asset, so posited the theory, and were leaning on the Chiefs to put country ahead of club and exclude their No12 from the forthcoming playoffs.
Not true, says Dave Rennie, with the coach insisting the plan for Williams to make his return against the Hurricanes has long been in play.
"He's good to go," Rennie said. "We've been really cautious around it. To be honest, he probably could have played last week, but we didn't want to push that.
"He's fired up. He was pretty keen to play last week and he reminded us that he was feeling pretty good on Saturday when we were in Brisbane."
That final point complicates the idea Williams is an unwitting pawn in the New Zealand Rugby machine. The 29-year-old has hardly had a surplus of rugby since returning from a stint with the Sydney Roosters and, having also been limited by injury earlier in the year, surely he would be better for every minute spent on the park with the Chiefs?
"He wants to play," Rennie said. "He's missed a bit of rugby this year - he got a concussion at one stage, he had a bit of an issue with his knee, so he hasn't played an enormous amount of rugby. He's desperate to play so it's good for us and good for him."
It must also, one would imagine, be good for the All Blacks. Resting a player this far from the World Cup seems self-defeating, especially when that player appears to be sitting behind Ma'a Nonu on the depth chart.
And Rennie confirmed that, while the ever-present Sam Cane would enjoy a week off against the Hurricanes, there were no such discussions with Steve Hansen and co about restricting Williams' role.
"We made an agreement at the start of the year that some guys would get a bit of rest," he said. "But I wouldn't say there's a hell of a lot of consultation. They're certainly not bullying us and saying, 'we want this and we want that'."
SBW's inconsistent season
-With a knee injury, concussion and a back problem, Williams has not played more than three straight games.
-After being a late withdrawal from the team to play the Hurricanes last month, he missed the past four matches
-Williams has played eight of the Chiefs' 15 games this year, racking up 592 minutes to sit 15th in the team.