Dean Pay refused to lay blame for his team's horrendous NRL first-round loss at the feet of his misfiring halves, admitting Canterbury were simply manhandled by the Warriors.
It was hard for Pay to find any silver lining following the 40-6 humbling at Mt Smart Stadium on Saturday, the deflated coach forced to admit his team were a distant second best in the physicality stakes.
It was giant comedown for the Bulldogs, who finished last season impressively and had made confident noises before crossing the Tasman.
They failed to match the intensity of a Warriors side galvanised by the terror attacks in Christchurch a day earlier and it showed in nearly every statistical category.
One exception was completion rate, where the Sydney club's 28 from 32 sets eclipsed the hosts and suggested halves Lachlan Lewis and Kieran Foran weren't sparking their side's attack.
While both had games to forget, Pay attributed their problems to his team's lack of go-forward, contrasting it to a Rolls Royce ride for influential Warriors No.7 Blake Green.
"It's very had to play off slow play-the-balls, to get anything generated," Pay said.
"I thought Green controlled the game, really well. He kicked well. Again, he's playing behind a really physical back five, a physical forward pack.
"Physically they were just too good for us."
Pay was horrified by Canterbury's glut of straightforward missed tackles, gifting the Warriors more than 2000 total running metres, including 241 alone to winger Ken Maumalo, the star of their brutal kick-return game.
Dylan Napa made a modest Bulldogs debut although Pay expects the Queensland prop to build on his 44 minutes over coming weeks.
"That's the amount of minutes that he could get out at the moment," Pay said.
"His first stint was OK. He got out 20 minutes or so and we're hoping to increase that over the season."
Canterbury began last season with fearful hammerings by Melbourne and the Roosters, forcing them to play catch-up for the remainder of the season.
Pay is desperate there is no repeat but says a U-turn is required against bitter Western Sydney rivals Parramatta next week.
"We want to turn it around really quick. We do," he said.
"Our attitude towards how physical we need to be needs to be better."