With a minute remaining in the first half and Canberra barely clinging to survival, Brent Naden charged onto a precision spiral ball from Tyrone May and spectacularly dove through the air grounding the football somewhere between a forlorn Jordan Rapana and the corner post.
Nathan Cleary's ensuing sideline conversion gave Penrith a 24-0 lead at the break after the competition's benchmark side had produced a near perfect half of football.
As a contest, it looked over. Yet Ricky Stuart's men refused to throw in the towel against a team which can do no wrong at the moment, and they held the Panthers tryless in the second stanza as Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad's bagged a double to reduce the losing margin.
But the early scoreboard damage simply proved too significant.
They were due a loss these jaded Raiders. And that's not at all to say they've been playing poorly because the opposite is true.
It's just they've been operating with a significant injury toll (five of their regular 17 at last count), and seemingly every week have to negotiate an away trip while observing the NRL's stringent COVID-19 protocols.
Penrith, on the other hand, were playing their 10th match in Sydney since the season restarted. And that continuity is showing.
If this were a boxing match, Penrith were the impossible opponent...a combination of Mike Tyson's power, Muhammad Ali's guile and Floyd Mayweather Junior's silk.
The Raiders threw some hefty blows of their own in the first half without landing anything on the unyielding Panthers defensive line.
On 31 minutes they threw their most dangerous haymaker, but not even Josh Papalii could crack that Penrith wall - held up by Cleary and Api Koroisau.
Earlier on it appeared Elliott Whitehead thank had scored, but the Bunker determined Rapana had tapped the ball backwards from an offside position and Penrith again escaped unscathed.
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The foundation was laid early. Penrith didn't touch the ball for almost seven minutes to open the match, but the Raiders' early blows only found fresh air.
And when Penrith had their opportunity to counter attack, they brutally took advantage.
They boast one of the game's scariest uppercuts, by the name of Viliame Kikau. He stormed threw a yawning gap between John Bateman and Hudson Young, before disposing of Nicoll-Klokstad close to the line to land this bout's first significant blow.
That was all Tyson. But unfortunately for the Raiders, these Panthers are not just street brawlers.
Cleary and Koroisau never stop jabbing. Stephen Crichton never stops scoring - his try against Canberra marked the eighth straight game in which he has crossed the stripe.
Stuart's men never threw in the towel, and the fixture list begins to ease up now. Beware the wounded brawler.