IT'S a sign of the continuing progress that's being made at the McAlpine that the Giants can lose 20-6 to Bradford Bulls and feel bitterly disappointed.
There was a time not too long ago when a 14-point Super League defeat to the men from Odsal would have been regarded as a moral victory.
Even last year, for instance, Huddersfield lost 52-6 at home to the Bulls after being totally outplayed in every department.
But yesterday, the Giants matched the reigning world club champions stride for stride and can count themselves unlucky not to have claimed this most prized of scalps.
Highly-respected Bradford coach Brian Noble admitted as much at the end of the contest when he said how delighted he was to have got the Giants out of the way.
"Anybody that comes to Huddersfield expecting an easy ride will be in for a shock," said a relieved Noble.
"The Giants are now genuinely tough opponents, well-coached and with quality players.
"I'm delighted to have come here and got the win. They made it tough for us."
And few could argue with that.
After 70 pulsating minutes the Bulls held a narrow 8-6 lead and the result could have gone either way.
But through some good fortune and cruel refereeing by match official Russell Smith, the Bulls maintained their unbeaten start to the season and ended the Giants' winning run.
Smith had already incurred the wrath of over 5,000 home fans by refusing to allow Huddersfield a penalty try when Marcus St Hilaire was obstructed by Tevita Vaikona as he attempted to follow-up Stanley Gene's kick-through.
Vaikona was deservedly sin-binned for his cynical part in the 33rd-minute incident.
But the key was whether St Hilaire would have been able to gather the bouncing ball cleanly and touch down.
Smith obviously felt not, and the Giants had to make do with the penalty.
Yet, arguably, it was Smith's decision to sin-bin Hefin O'Hare in the 67th minute for not standing square as a play-the-ball marker that hit the Giants the hardest.
Obviously, the fact Smith had penalised Huddersfield twice for the same offence minutes before and had sent Bulls prop Stuart Fielden to the bin for doing likewise in the 34th minute was behind the decision.
However, it was the timing that was so critical.
As this tightest of games was reaching a tense finale, the visitors had been handed a massive psychological lift.
And within three minutes of O'Hare's departure the rejuvenated Bulls had embarked on their victory charge - albeit fortuitously.
Leon Pryce made it possible by racing clear just inside his own half.
But as the Giants' defence began to close him down, he desperately flung the ball back in the hope of finding a colleague.
The alert St Hilaire managed to block the pass, but it fell to ground directly at the feet of scrum half Paul Deacon, who simply couldn't believe his luck as he scooped up the ball and strolled over for the easiest try of his career.
Deacon then added the conversion and suddenly the Bulls had an eight-point lead.
And before O'Hare had chance to rejoin the action another scrappy move culminated in Paul Johnson touching down after the ball had bobbled in the Huddersfield in-goal area.
It was again converted and the Bulls had the points in the bag.
But it also signalled a disappointing end to what in dreadful conditions had been an entertaining game.
Despite a combination of high winds, heavy rain and hailstones, the ball retention of the players was at times remarkable.
No doubt the conditions contributed to the tight nature of the contest, but it still made for compelling watching.
Even though the opening half was tryless, with the Bulls leading 4-2 at the break with two Deacon penalties to one from Paul March, both sides created chances.
In fact, the Giants will have felt very disappointed not to have been leading at the break .
Bradford were twice forced to drop-out from under their own posts, while Julian Bailey and the lively Sean Penkywicz were both held up on the line.
Then, of course, St Hilaire was denied illegally just before the interval by Vaikona's obstruction.
Frustration mounted for the home side within three minutes of the restart when Penkywicz was harshly sin-binned for holding down. He didn't hold up play whatsoever.
And within a minute Pryce's long pass on the sixth tackle sent Johnson over for the opener, which Deacon failed to convert.
But for the next 25 minutes the Giants held the edge, with Ben Roarty and Chris Nero coming close before they grabbed their only try of the game in the 61st minute.
Brandon Costin ran the ball to the line, and from the acting half-back position Darren Turner plunged over in typical fashion.
March was unable to convert and at 6-8 the contest was wide open.
Unfortunately, the final 13 minutes were to prove desperately unlucky for Huddersfield.