Another year, another Crusaders title, is the widely held expectation for the maiden Super Rugby Aotearoa final. So much so it seems the alternative is not even being considered.
Scott Robertson's men lace the boots in Christchurch tonight seeking their fifth successive title at a venue they have won all 24 previous Super Rugby playoff games.
Start the music, Robertson stands on the cusp of delivering the next instalment of his celebratory breakdancing.
The Crusaders' home finals record alone is enough to make those in Mooloo country reach for a much stronger brew than the abundance of locally produced milk.
Everything, it seems, is stacked against the Chiefs. Yet so, too, has it been that way since Clayton McMillan stepped into Warren Gatland's breach to lead the Chiefs from the grim haze of their 11-game losing funk.
The narrative surrounding the Chiefs this season has been impossible to ignore, building to a crescendo like Willie the Waiter shaking a bottle of Waikato Draught.
Forget last week's spirited and largely meaningless loss to Blues, when the Chiefs made 21 changes to rest their leading figures.
It's the five straight wins prior, which includes victory over the Crusaders in Hamilton, the Chiefs must draw confidence from.
After an eight-year wait for another final, somehow the Chiefs earned a crack at clinching their third title. The last two came during the Dave Rennie-Wayne Smith halcyon days of 2012-13. If they are to pull off this triumph, it would easily rank as the most unfathomable.
From the depths of dread to champions, what a remarkable ride that would be. Even more so given Gatland scarpered to lead the British and Irish Lions and Sam Cane's injury absence.
An upset is not out of the question. Not if the Chiefs start well; not with Damian McKenzie, this year's leading points scorer, repeatedly proving his clutch capabilities by kicking the Chiefs to three successive wins at the death.
Luke Jacobson has been in beastly form. Likewise, All Blacks lock Tupou Vaa'i. Lachlan Boshier is a constant breakdown menace. Anton Lienert-Brown continues to warm into his work and Brad Weber's snipes have threatened all season.
The Chiefs set-piece must hold firm; their error and penalty rate remain low. And they must be more alert than ever before and after halftime, when the Crusaders invariably strike.
Defensively, the Chiefs must be impeccable. That's why they compromised their lineout to start loose forward Mitchell Brown at lock, and harness Pita Gus Sowakula's powerful carries from the blindside.
One of the Crusaders' many advantages is their collective experience. Even with Jack Goodhue and Joe Moody sidelined the vast majority of their squad has been there, done that, when it comes to winning titles. That matters.
What the Chiefs lack in comparable finals experience they can draw from adversity, though. This season they won from unwinnable positions – coming back from 19 points down against the Hurricanes in Wellington - and overcame seemingly insurmountable odds just to reach this sudden death match.
What's one more huge hurdle?
For inspiration, the Chiefs need look no further than their adopted leader. Here is a bloke who embodies the tenacious values they need against the vaunted Crusaders.
What you see is what you get with McMillan. In a coaching landscape dominated by an obsession with former All Blacks, McMillan instead scrapped his way from the club scene to provincial rugby with Bay of Plenty, onto New Zealand Māori and now as interim coach of the Chiefs, all the while knowing Gatland's shadow loomed over him.
He's constantly fended off that messy coaching arrangement to thrive in a role he could not be more passionate about.
"I've really enjoyed the ride," McMillan said after last week's loss to the Blues.
After hitting rock bottom McMillan has rebuilt the Chiefs culture this season and deserves every accolade for the no-frills manner in which he's done so.
McMillan's simple, direct messaging clearly resonates and it's inspired his players to exceed all expectations.
Everyone knows Robertson's claims to be the next All Blacks coach will be strengthened once more by capturing another crown.
Yet no matter what happens this weekend McMillan's coaching credentials have, perhaps, made a more pronounced leap.
An underdog triumph that no one is predicting would elevate him to heroic status in Chiefs country, and earn widespread respect from the rugby world.
Ponder that before gifting the Crusaders the title.