Much has been made of Ian Foster's accession to the All Blacks throne – not so John Plumtree's hard-nosed presence as assistant coach.
Watch the All Blacks hoe into the breakdown, the cleanout, with renewed vigor against the Wallabies this weekend, and Plumtree's influence should be immediately clear.
After last year's World Cup semifinal defeat in which England steamrolled the All Blacks pack, expect Plumtree to bring back the mongrel.
Plumtree has been careful to ease into his new role as forwards coach after stepping up from leading the Hurricanes. In many ways he is much like the rookie prospects the All Blacks will unleash on the Wallabies in Wellington – still finding his feet, attempting to control the enthusiasm until game day arrives, but there is no doubting his area of expertise.
"It's been a softly, softly approach right now. As a Super coach you meet them in the changing room and have a quiet chat but now I can really knuckle down and get to know them as people, not just as players, and what makes them tick and then start imputing my strategies, philosophies, beliefs around the game and what I put a big emphasis on," Plumtree said on Wednesday after the All Blacks trained in the morning.
"I don't think it would be fair for me to say I'm going to change everything because we know the coaches before us did a great job but there will be little changes, changes of language, and what I believe in because that's natural."
Anyone who knows anything about Plumtree knows his extensive time in South Africa, as a lock/loose forward and coach, shaped his rugby beliefs. And anyone who knows anything about South African rugby knows their approach to the game is built around the singular focus to physically hurt their opposition.
"You know what part of the world I come from. Ardie Savea just worked out I was a Kiwi the other day. I love coaching the contact area. The players know how passionate I am around that.
"In saying that, these players are multi skilled. They can catch and pass; they have great feet. The set piece is a massive part of All Blacks rugby and we've got to make sure we add to that legacy."
Rugby can be a technical game yet at the heart of the best All Blacks performances in recent times is quick, clean ball. That, in turn, allows Aaron Smith to fire his rapid pass and pick his targets. In that ideal the All Blacks play what they see, and are near unstoppable.
When the opposition takes it to them physically and makes a mess of their possession source, the All Blacks struggle.
"I've definitely noticed his passion in terms of the breakdown," All Blacks hooker Codie Taylor noted. "He's slipped in quite nicely in that role. It's one thing we want to nail because it helps our game a lot. We know if the Aussies can disrupt our ball then it'll put us under a bit of pressure.
"It was always a focus but with Plum coming in it brings a bit of edge with his mindset around that whole area which is good. It comes back to our mindset on Sunday. We're here to front up and play as All Blacks."
As one of three selectors, Foster and Grant Fox the others, Plumtree has picked a particular profile of athlete in his forward pack. While they all can play ball – most are big, strong, powerful.
The next step is evoking the attitude to repeat the aggressive approach week after week.
After last pulling on the black jersey almost one year ago – even longer since they played at home – little needs to be said to spark the necessary reaction this weekend.
"They've pretty much got that," Plumtree said. "It wouldn't be fair for me to say I want to make the players more physical because the Blues have been pretty good all year; the Crusaders have been awesome, and the Hurricanes boys.
"All our franchises they're very physical, and we know the All Black jersey demands that so for me to go and tell the players we need to be more physical they'd laugh at me.
"It's around our game skills that enable us to dominate. You're not going to dominate all the time but it's getting back up on your feet and having another go – that type of attitude."