HUDDERSFIELD Giants have produced yet another performance that makes something of a mockery of their place in Super League's top six.
Against a St Helens side lacking several of their most inspirational stars, the visitors were put to the sword as they crumbled to a nine tries to two defeat.
At the heart of this Knowsley Road horror show was a nightmare opening 40 minutes when the Saints ripped the Giants apart to lead 28-0.
Huddersfield coach Jon Sharp had always feared the possibility of a backlash after St Helens had suffered the humiliation of a 70-0 defeat at leaders Leeds the week before.
Yet even he couldn't have expected events to have gone as badly as this.
It was clear from the start that Saints were determined to erase the memory of their Headingley embarrassment as rapidly as possible.
Yet coach Ian Millward's men must surely not have imagined their visitors would hnave been so obliging in making this possible.
In the opening half, the Giants were as flat as a pancake, the flattest they have been all year - and against Saints that's asking for trouble.
In defence, they looked all over the place as their hosts punished them time and again.
It was a little better on attack, with several opportunities having been created.
But the way they blew them all when in promising positions just about summed up their night.
Brandon Costin failed to gather Paul March's kick-through to score, Stuart Donlan's tryscoring pass to Marcus St Hilaire went way forward, while Paul Smith and Iain Morrison both broke clear and then found a Saints' player with their passes rather than supporting teammates.
As a result, it was no great surprise that the game was over as a contest by half-time.
St Hilaire's brilliant tackle to deny Paul Wellens after three minutes suggested the Giants might be up to the task.
But two minutes later, Paul Reilly was forced to hobble off with an ankle injury after being trapped in-goal, and the nightmare had got under way.
From the drop-put Saints prepared for the kill, and on the sixth tackle Darren Albert was on hand to plunge over.
Jason Hooper failed to add the conversion, but made no mistake adding the extras to his side's four other first-half scores.
By the 11th minute the home side had added their second try as John Stankevitch was able to crash through some woeful defence with ease and eight minutes later Keiron Cunningham had barged his way over for try No3.
Back-to-back penalties enabled Keith Mason to crash over for the next try and three minutes before the break Willie Talua scooped up a loose ball on halfway and strolled clear for his easiest try of the season.
At 28-0 and with Saints hitting top form and the Giants producing some of their worst, a humiliating final scoreline looked a distinct possibility.
But for the first time in ages, Huddersfield didn't suffer their now almost customary sluggish second-half start.
Instead, for the opening 20 minutes they were by far the better side.
Within a minute of the restart, March took on the Saints line and popped up the perfect pass for Smith to collect on the burst and race in at the corner.
The accurate Costin added the touchline goal and the small but vocal band of Huddersfield fans finally had something to cheer.
St Hilaire and Smith both had chances to extend the tally before the hour mark - before St Helens regained control.
Talau set the ball rolling by crashing over from close range in the 63rd minute and then three minutes later Hooper's brilliant pick-up of a low pass gave him a try under the posts to bring up the 40 points.
The Giants responded with a second try when S Hilaire squeezed over in the corner after collecting Ben Roarty's long, floating pass.
But in the final eight minutes the Challenge Cup holders grabbed two further scores to bring up the half-century.
First, Ade Gardner raced down the wing after collecting Gilmour's pass and then the same man set up Stankevitch for his second.
It was a defeat that again left the Giants reeling.
* Huddersfield have confirmed their McAlpine clash against Hull FC will take place on Saturday, September 4 (3.00).
The switch has been made because Huddersfield Town are in action at home to Hull City the following day.