North Melbourne has fallen to a 57-point loss at the hands of Melbourne on Sunday night.
The Roos showed encouraging signs in the opening term at Adelaide Oval, dominating possession and taking a ten-point lead into the first break.
But it was all Demons from then on; North booted just two goals in the final three quarters, while its opponent booted 12.
Despite a disappointing loss there were some encouraging individual performances, with Luke Davies-Uniacke particularly impressive in the first half and finishing with 24 disposals, and Nick Larkey booting 4 goals.
Luke McDonald continued his strong recent form with 33 touches and 9 marks.
There were periods late in the game when North had just one player on the bench, with Aiden Bonar (shoulder), Jed Anderson (eye) and Josh Walker (leg) all injured.
Goldy gets a breather
Star Demon Max Gawn (shoulder) not playing meant there wasn't going to be another chapter of his captivating ruck rivalry with Todd Goldstein. North Melbourne coach Rhyce Shaw said on game eve Gawn's absence wouldn't impact on his club's plans, but things certainly looked different. Majak Daw, rather than Goldstein, started in the ruck – although Goldy was in there by the second centre bounce – and the 2015 Virgin Australia AFL All-Australian played far less game time than usual. Goldstein is one of the AFL's great workhorses, but he played only 87 per cent of Sunday's game. The Kangaroos still dominated the hitout count, but only split the clearances. They were playing for the third time in nine days, so the 32-year-old was deserving of lighter duties in what's been a mighty individual campaign.
NORTH MELBOURNE 3.2 4.2 5.4 5.5 (35)
MELBOURNE 1.4 4.7 7.8 13.14 (92)
North Melbourne: Larkey 4, Daw
Melbourne: Weideman 2, Fritsch 2, Pickett, Brayshaw, Melksham, Petracca, Spargo, T.McDonald, Hannan, Sparrow, Oliver
North Melbourne: McDonald, Larkey, Dumont, Davies-Uniacke
Melbourne: Petracca, Brayshaw, Oliver, Langdon, Pickett, Lever, Weideman
North Melbourne: Bonar (left shoulder), Anderson (eye), Walker (head knock/leg)