Richmond are back in the AFL top eight after shrugging off a severe defence disruption to run away from Port Adelaide on Saturday night.
The Tigers blew open the contest with a seven-goal, third quarter burst to set-up the 16.13 (109) to 10.11 (71) victory at the Adelaide Oval.
It was as if the Tigers sniffed finals action again, with their maniacal attack on the ball after an even first half to take control despite losing a key backman for the entire second half.
A backline already missing co-captain Dylan Grimes had to defend the entire second half without another premiership hero, Nick Vlastuin, who was subbed out with a rib injury in the opening minute of the third quarter.
Richmond covered the limitations down back by simply denying the Power the ability to go forward and get within range.
While the Tigers had viable targets with Tom Lynch and Shai Bolton each booting four goals, the home team lacked firepower and were even forced to throw Charlie Dixon into the ruck in the second half to try to counter rampaging Tiger ruck Toby Nankervis.
Aside from Vlastuin's injury, the triumphant Tigers have other concerns with an expected striking charge against wingman Kamdyn McIntosh and possible citing of former skipper Trent Cotchin for a sling tackle.
But overall this was another example of why any premiership contender would fear facing Richmond in September as the Tigers ran the Power ragged with slick ball movement, ability to take risks to get the ball quickly to their imposing targets up forward.
The Tigers posted their biggest win against Port Adelaide at the Adelaide Oval without any scoreboard contribution from veteran Jack Riewoldt. And gun midfielder Dustin Martin should be back soon too.
"I think we'll find room for Dusty. Obviously, there's a couple of things that have to go our way and we have to win the next two weeks. But we'll take this, Port Adelaide are so hard to beat over here," Lynch said.
On whether the Tigers can pull off another premiership triumph, Lynch said: "We've got to get there first, so we have to keep winning, but it's exciting."
Bolton, who was goalless when the Tigers beat the Power by 12 points in round 13, further enhanced his standing as one of the game's most exciting players.
He was a constant danger with his lightning speed and clean hands. He kicked crucial goals when the match was still in the balance - one after the quarter-time siren and another seconds before the half-time siren.
Cotchin, Richmond's experienced midfield leader, may come under match review scrutiny for a sling tackle on Power counterpart Ollie Wines midway through the opening quarter. McIntosh appeared to be booked by a field umpire after a clash with Power's Darcy Byrne-Jones in the last quarter.
With so much on the line for both teams, it was little wonder the ball-carrier had to endure finals-type pressure which resulted in regular turnovers and rebound out of defence.
And both combatants would have liked their winning chances during a welcome breather at half-time. The Power posted the first goal after the restart, but any hopes of a home town upset were snuffed out by three Lynch goals in Richmond's 7.4 to 3.2 third term to seize control.
Australian Associated Press
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