The story of Saturday night at Waikato Stadium should have been the long-held records and hurdles the Blues continue to conquer this season. Instead, though, victory over the Chiefs was tinged with ongoing frustration as Super Rugby Aotearoa's breakdown interpretations leave players, coaches and fans lamenting compromised spectacles.
First, the good news for Blues supporters. Your team has won five successive away matches for the first time in their history. The 24-12 win also broke a nine-year drought in Hamilton – and the team is now unbeaten in their past six games.
Despite knocking off those significant hurdles, after dispatching the Hurricanes last week, inspirational Blues captain Patrick Tuipulotu keeps reiterating the bigger picture that is delivering success week after week throughout the unforgiving New Zealand derby competition.
"This whole group is determined to make a legacy," Tuipulotu said following another standout individual performance. "That's the journey we're on and I'm thrilled with what we're doing so far, but the challenge is being consistent.
"We know it's only game two, only a start. Blues teams of old would have gone in there with all the motions and no process so I'm happy with how we've gone about our past five weeks."
While persistent rain contributed to this largely uninspiring spectacle, both teams were left perplexed by many of the breakdown rulings from referee Ben O'Keeffe, who handed out 22 penalties.
That number is not overly high compared to last week's 58 across the opening weekend's two fixtures, but the Blues conceded 10 penalties by halftime and both teams were frustrated by some of O'Keeffe's rulings.
Blues coach Leon MacDonald was particularly irate in the coaching box as O'Keeffe, officiating his 50th Super Rugby match, sent Dalton Papalii to the sin bin after an attempted breakdown steal just before halftime.
"We'll have a good look at what we can do better and seek clarity," MacDonald said. "Consistency from one week to the next is what everyone is looking for. I suppose that's where we're at – trying to adapt to these new rules."
MacDonald said conversations were free-flowing between national referees boss Bryce Lawrence, officials and coaches as they attempted to get on the same page with the crackdown on the breakdown which aims to police the offside line and create quick, clean ball.
"We're all in this together. We all see the upside of the laws and what they're trying to achieve.
"We've got things wrong, the ref probably got a couple wrong as well, and that's where we've got to be really open and honest around the review and look to get a product that we want to play and people want to watch. That's what we're all searching for."
Asked whether he witnessed improvements from last week, Tuipulotu said: "I wouldn't say improvement just different pictures and different clarity. We trained a different picture during the week so to come into the game and get penalised for a different picture it's pretty hard. In saying that, I'm proud of the way we stood our ground and managed to keep the ref out of it in the second half."
Having watched his team lose three in a row at home for the first time since 2002, Chiefs coach Warren Gatland lamented their 18 turnovers at the lineout, scrum and in contact, but he shared gripes around the apparent different approaches from the New Zealand referees.
"For me it was frustrating because tonight was refereed quite a bit differently to last week at the breakdown so we've got to get used to that and the interpretations," Gatland said.
"One referee sees one picture, another referee sees it slightly differently, and you've got to react to that. We've got to be tough on ourselves too.
"They're trying to speed things up and make the game faster we've just got to keep adapting to that."
With nine weeks left in this competition, the issue is how long that adapting takes.
Setting aside the breakdown complications Chiefs playmaker Aaron Cruden acknowledged it is now a long way back for his side after dropping their first two matches.
Failing to score a try against the resilient Blues defence and the malfunctioning set piece will be top of the list of desired improvements before travelling to Christchurch next week.
"The body always seems to be a little bit sorer when you lose," Cruden said. "We know we have to turn it around quickly. There's a few areas if we can get right but in this competition, there's only another six games so we have to turn it around if we want to push for that top spot."