All Blacks 24
The All Blacks were looking for the perfect performance but instead almost fell to a perfect storm of constant mistakes and Scottish fire at Murrayfield today.
That they emerged victorious in front of a increasingly excited crowd of 66,000 and prevented Scotland from winning their first ever test against them owed much to their coolness in the final stages and a deserved try to lock Jeremy Thrush with six minutes remaining.
Greig Laidlaw had missed a penalty only minutes earlier which would have given Scotland a 19-17 lead. Instead, his miss and Thrush's converted try put the All Blacks out to 24-16.
Only two players, Ben Smith and Richie McCaw, retained their places from the week before at Twickenham and the mass changes were immediately obvious.
It was another scrappy start from the All Blacks, who looked overly eager to push passes and as a result many were spilt. Most worrying was the fact they didn't improve much as the test wore on. The failed to win enough quick ball and the stop-start nature of the match also counted against them.
Their best period coincided with a host of replacements in the second half, including Sonny Bill Williams, Julian Savea, Ben Franks and Luke Romano. But even then there were some puzzling moments as they looked to put the pressure on. Sam Cane's decision to kick through rather than pass when inside the Scots' 22m area was one strange one.
Dan Carter's stated aim ahead of his first test start in 12 months was to be the best player on the pitch. He will have to be satisfied with coming through his 56 minutes uninjured. Colin Slade moved from right wing to first-five and ran the ship with authority.
Carter was guilty of several handling errors, and he wasn't the only one. Richie McCaw was having one of those days, too, and so were several of his teammates.
McCaw dropped the ball in the lead up to Victor Vito's try (which was ignored by referee Romain Poite) and then watched later as his pass to Vito was intercepted by Tommy Seymour, who scored.
The starts to tests have been a big focus for the All Blacks this week following tardiness in their previous victories over England and Australia in Brisbane, and loss to South Africa in Johannesburg.
Vito, who scored a stunning individual try after receiving a Thrush pass on the bounce, swivelling, and then scoring in the corner after a 40m run, limped from the field as the half drew to a close, with Liam Messam replacing him.
The All Blacks missed the crispness of halfback Aaron Smith and the directness of No8 Kieran Read. They survived, though, and after this scrap that is something for them to be thankful for.
All Blacks 24 (Victor Vito, Jeremy Thrush tries; Dan Carter 3 pens, Colin Slade pen, con)
Scotland 16 (Tommy Seymour try; Greig Laidlaw con, 3 pens)