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The New Zealand Warriors.

Without fail, whenever a premiership contender concedes 50 points in a game pundits are quick to note no team has ever conceded that many in a match and won the title in the same year.

Preseason fancies Parramatta went down 54-0 in round two and now bear the burden of having to overcome this record.

Then the Warriors – not heavily-tipped as title contenders preseason but who quickly put themselves in the conversation with a 6-1 start to the year including an impressive win over the unbeaten Dragons in round seven – went down 50-10 in Melbourne last week, before Saturday's 26-4 win over the Tigers.

So does the 50-point mark work like some magical force field to stop teams winning the Telstra Premiership?

Certainly it stands to reason that the premiers in any year are one of the better defensive teams and as such are unlikely to get 50 put on them at any stage of the season.

But it's not unprecedented for the premiers to have a hiccup or two along the way and as such, Stats has taken a look at the biggest losses by eventual grand final winners and found a little bit of encouragement for the Warriors (and to a lesser extent the Eels).

It turns out the biggest such loss was by the 2001 Newcastle Knights. It should be noted that 2001 was a massively high-scoring season (the most ever points scored by a team in a single season was by the 2001 Eels, followed closely by the Knights).

Newcastle copped a 49-30 hiding at the hands of Cronulla that year, just one shy of the 50-barrier and the biggest score ever conceded by a premiership side. They also got touched up 40-0 by their eventual grand final opponents Parramatta (the second biggest loss by margin by a premiership team) and 42-8 by the Broncos (the sixth largest loss) as well as going down to Canterbury 46-18 and St George Illawarra 38-12. 

The third biggest loss by margin should give the Warriors the most encouragement – in 2002 the Roosters went down to Melbourne and got done 48-10, an almost identical scorecard to what was inflicted on the Warriors last week by the same club in the same city.

The biggest margin of loss by a premiership team is 42 points – two bigger than the Warriors' recent loss – by the 1995 Canterbury Bulldogs, who came from sixth to win the competition despite being handed a 42-0 hiding by the Knights earlier that year.

Other big scores conceded by premiership teams include the 46-10 loss by Balmain against South Sydney in 1947, the 44-20 win by the North Queensland Cowboys over Wests Tigers in 2005 and the 44-22 win by Brisbane over Cowboys in 2015.

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