THIS incarnation of Brisbane – an exciting, pulsating, hard-nosed side that coach Chris Fagan has carefully developed over the past three years – is all about breaking new ground.
And after winning at Adelaide Oval for the first time in seven attempts, these rampaging Lions are clawing their way towards not only snapping a decade-long finals drought, but must now be mentioned in the conversation when talk comes to the flag contenders, in a year where there is no definitive favourite for the premiership.
LIONS SHUT OUT POWER Full match coverage and stats
The Lions (11-5) have risen to third on the ladder after a stunning 48-point thumping – 14.13 (97) to 6.13 (49) – of hot and cold Port Adelaide (8-8) on Sunday in front of a crowd of 33,118.
Electric forward Charlie Cameron celebrated his 100th game in style with the ex-Crow booting four goals.
The victory was set up with a brilliant seven-goal burst from the Lions in the first 22 minutes of the game.
The visitors had an answer for everything the Power threw at them, including having mid-season rookie draft recruit Cam Sutcliffe tag his former Fremantle teammate Lachie Neale.
It wasn't just Sutcliffe who was giving Neale – who had 43 disposals the last time the teams met in Brisbane in round three – a hard time.
Tom Rockliff and Dougal Howard gave away 50m penalties for off-the-ball contact on Neale in the first quarter, costing the Power a goal.
Tempers flared early in the first quarter of #AFLPowerLions.
Plenty of feeling in this one. pic.twitter.com/4K2i1mr1TX— AFL (@AFL) July 14, 2019
The Power dropped the Neale tag at half-time, but by then, the damage was done.
The Lions led by 44 points at the main break.
Apart from a couple of quick goals from Robbie Gray and Zak Butters midway through the third term, the Power barely fired a shot.
Jarryd Lyons (36 disposals) continued to show why he was a bargain pick-up for the Lions with an outstanding midfield performance.
Dayne Zorko (24 touches, three goals) was extremely damaging, while Daniel Rich – the only survivor of the Lions' most recent finals appearance in 2009 – was part of a dynamic backline that provided plenty of run.
While the Lions are surging, the Power are the most confusing team in the competition.
After looking like world beaters following their 57-point thumping of cross-town rivals Adelaide in last weekend's Showdown, they continued their trend of going win, loss, for an eighth straight week.
To make matters worse, defender Ryan Burton appears set for a second stint on the sideline after pinging his right hamstring while chasing Cameron in the third quarter.
It's the same hamstring he injured sprinting after Cameron's mentor, Crows veteran Eddie Betts, in the round eight Showdown.
Ollie Wines (32 disposals), Robbie Gray (32 touches, 24 in the second half) and Darcy Byrne-Jones (30) were the best for the Power.
Port Adelaide: Dan Houston was ruled out before the game with illness, replaced by Sam Powell-Pepper. Ryan Burton looks for another stint on the sidelines when he injured his right hamstring in the third quarter when he was chasing Lions forward Charlie Cameron. It's the same hamstring he injured in the round eight Showdown against Adelaide when he sprinted after Eddie Betts. Brad Ebert injured his left knee in the second quarter and hobbled off the ground for treatment. He had the knee strapped and returned late in the quarter. Ollie Wines dislocated his left thumb in the first quarter. He headed to the rooms, had it strapped and returned to the game, finishing with 32 disposals.
Brisbane: Midfielder Hugh McCluggage was a late scratching with hamstring tightness, with Ben Keays taking his place. The Lions appeared to have a clean bill of health during the game.
The Power face a big ask when they take on Richmond at the MCG next Saturday afternoon, while the Lions host North Melbourne at the Gabba next Saturday night.
PORT ADELAIDE 2.1 3.4 6.4 6.13 (49)
BRISBANE 7.1 10.6 12.12 14.13 (97)
Port Adelaide: S.Gray 2, Bonner, Dixon, R.Gray, Butters
Brisbane: Cameron 4, Zorko 3, McCarthy 2, Witherden, Lyons, Robinson, Bailey, Rayner
Port Adelaide: Wines, Byrne-Jones, R.Gray, S.Gray
Brisbane: Lyons, Zorko, Cameron, Robinson, Andrews, McCarthy, Witherden
Port Adelaide: Dan Houston (virus) replaced in selected side by Sam Powell-Pepper, Burton (hamstring)
Brisbane: Hugh McCluggage (hamstring tightness) replaced in selected side by Ben Keays,
Umpires: Hay, Meredith, Ryan
Crowd: 33,118 at Adelaide Oval