The Southside Flyers didn't even need basketball legend Lauren Jackson to hand the Canberra Capitals a crushing sixth defeat from six WNBL games.
It was American Mercedes Russell, the WNBA teammate at the Seattle Storm of Capitals skipper Jade Melbourne, who inflicted the most damage in the Flyers' 81-64 win over Canberra.
In front of more than 2000 people in Melbourne, Russell finished with a double-double (21 points, 11 rebounds) to guide the home side to victory, as former Capitals hero Jackson was rested.
A total of 20 turnovers and a poor 54 per cent from the free-throw line hurt the undersized, youthful Canberra side.
The Capitals were on the backfoot early trailing 24-10, with Opals star Melbourne scoreless in the opening quarter and Japanese international Monica Okoye having mixed success finding her three-point range.
Staring down a 15-point deficit at one point in the second term, the Capitals finally began to sing on offense through Nicole Munger, Alex Fowler, Alex Sharp and Melbourne.
With the latter three in the WNBL's top seven scorers, there was never a doubt that Canberra had an explosive attack in them, as they showed the league-leading Melbourne Boomers in their last game.
It was turnovers and errors that kept proving costly against Southside though.
The visitors were described as "sluggish" in the broadcast commentary, but somehow they kept in touch to be only seven points behind the Flyers at the major break.
In the third quarter Melbourne and Munger combined for some silky play driving to the basket that got Canberra within three points, but turnovers told the story of the night.
Southside's experience and depth also looked a class above with their bench players producing 12 more points than the Capitals' rotation by the third quarter.
Canberra failed to pounce on their opportunities in the final quarter, as the Flyers twisted the knife to deny the Capitals any hopes of another miracle comeback attempt.
Munger was the best of the Capitals with 15 points and eight rebounds, and Alex Sharp had a double-double (11 points, 10 rebounds), as normally on-song Melbourne failed to reach double digits in any statistic.
The Capitals will look to bounce back on Friday night when they welcome the Sydney Flames to Canberra.
Sydney have the second-worst points difference next to Canberra, suggesting it could be an excellent opportunity for the Capitals to finally get in the winners' circle.
AT A GLANCE
WNBL Round 5
SOUTHSIDE FLYERS 81 (M Russell 21, B Cole 17) bt CANBERRA CAPITALS 64 (N Munger 15, A Fowler 13)