The Rabbitohs may have run 11 tries past the Warriors in a 60-22 romp but coach Wayne Bennett rated his team's performance a "six out of 10".
But the top two teams Melbourne and Penrith might rate it differently and will no doubt be looking over their shoulders after the Rabbitohs ran in 11 tries at Sunshine Coast Stadium on Saturday.
After a scrappy win over cellar-dwellers Canterbury a week ago, South Sydney appeared to bounce back to their best, registering 60 points for just the fourth time in their rich club history to cruise to their seventh straight win.
Hard marker Bennett wasn't exactly popping the champagne after conceding four "soft" tries to a Warriors outfit again hit hard by injury, losing Jack Murchie, Eliesa Katoa (both concussion) and Addin Fonua-Blake (hand).
Asked to rate their win, Bennett said: "About six out of 10".
Match: Rabbitohs v Warriors
Round 19 -
Venue: Sunshine Coast Stadium, Sunshine Coast
So there's room for improvement?
"Particularly with our defence anyway. It's not the actual numbers that is a concern it is the way we are giving up soft tries."
South Sydney's 15th win of the season should have all but locked up a top-four finish and remain a minor premiership smokey just one win behind leaders the Storm.
After welcoming back Origin X-factor Latrell Mitchell from a post-State of Origin rest and Queensland forward Jai Arrow's return from suspension on Saturday, the Rabbitohs appear to have hit the re-set button with the finals in sight.
Despite being without the NRL's leading try scorer Alex Johnston (hamstring) and centre Campbell Graham (concussion), their rejigged backline still fired with replacement winger Josh Mansour bagging a double along with dominant forwards Tom Burgess and Jaydn Su'A.
Mitchell just monsters his way over
They comfortably piled on the points despite Cody Walker nursing a knee niggle and halves partner Adam Reynolds succumbing to a hamstring twinge in the 59th minute.
But Bennett said he would get a better gauge on their chances of threatening the top two in their six-game run home in which five matches are against current top-eight teams.
"There are six weeks to go after today. It is starting to open up, things are starting to fall," Bennett said.
"There are some in the group who have fallen. We are in the group who are staying around the top.
"That's our challenge - six more weeks against some of the top teams. We will have a pretty good handle on ourselves once the season comes to its conclusion."
Montoya juggles it backwards across the line
Bennett was wary of the bar already being raised post-Origin.
"What I saw the last two days, teams are in a different state of mind (post Origin)," he said.
"When everything is behind you, you can see the season end not far away. The quality of football over the last two or three days has been pretty high.
"Teams that probably haven't aimed up so well at different stages have certainly aimed up in the last couple of games.
"I think it will only get better in the next six weeks."
All eyes were on Mitchell on his return and the fullback didn't disappoint, running 193 metres and finishing with two line breaks, seven tackle busts.
Simply out of this world from Latrell Mitchell
He threw a spectacular around the corner pass for Cam Murray to score in the first half before capping his display with a bulldozing 76th minute try of his own.
Yet hooker Damien Cook was the standout, turning the Warriors inside out from dummy half to lay on three tries.
Bennett may have been hard to please but Warriors coach Nathan Brown was quick to heap praise on the Rabbitohs after they all but snuffed out his side's finals hopes.
After a gutsy display in their round 18 loss to Penrith in which their bench was cleared by injury by half-time, Brown was left deflated as the Warriors (5-13 record) crashed to their seventh straight loss.
"I thought our performance last week was probably the best of the year but we knew it was going to be a tough contest against Souths," Brown said.
Rabbitohs go up another gear as Walker steps his way to a try
"They are an outstanding footy team, only lost a couple of times all year - twice to Melbourne and once to Penrith.
"They are classy players. But the way we started was really poor and the way our defence surrendered, they basically walked over the try line.
"It was extremely disappointing."
The Warriors had a dream start after Dallin Watene-Zelezniak opened the scoring in just the fifth minute, pouncing on a Walker pass that went to ground and racing 40 metres to score untouched.
Then it all went pear-shaped for the New Zelanders with South Sydney scoring six tries in 23 minutes - including a Burgess double by the 18th minute - to lead 34-16 at half-time.
The Rabbitohs juggernaut rumbled along in the second half with Su'A grabbing a double of his own by the 41st minute before Mansour got in the act with two tries in three minutes (53rd, 56th) as Cook cut the Warriors' right edge to ribbons.