IN A WEIRD round of football, there is something to be said for a conventional 28-point win.
We've seen snow, two record low scores, a handful of goalless quarters and a 21-consecutive goal run, but two traditional rivals played a typically soggy winter game at the MCG on Sunday afternoon.
Richmond, recording its seventh consecutive win, was just a little bit too good for an outclassed Carlton, winning 11.7 (73) to 6.9 (45).
The Tigers dominated the first half, restricting Carlton to just a solitary goal, but the Blues put up more of a fight after the main break.
Jack Graham kicked four goals in the first half for the Tigers and Coleman Medal hopeful Tom Lynch managed two in the trying conditions, as did Jack Riewoldt.
The Blues struggled to get run out of defence, constantly thwarted in the first half by the loose defender in their forward line, whether that be Nick Vlastuin, Bachar Houli or Dylan Grimes.
Vlastuin lived up to his nickname of "Tigger"; at one point almost literally bouncing out of defence, complete with a don't argue, change of angle and bounce of the ball, before finishing with a perfect pass to Sydney Stack.
Carlton did well to fight its way back into the contest after battling in the first half, with Mitch McGovern kicking two goals in his return to the side.
The Blues' first goal eventually came in the 27th minute of the second term, when ruckman Matthew Kreuzer showed no signs of his two-week break for soreness, scooping up a poor Richmond kick off the deck and converting.
Without Dustin Martin (soreness) and Trent Cotchin (hamstring), milestone men Dion Prestia (150 games) and Shane Edwards (250) seemed to bring their own rain-resistant footballs, while unlikely scorer Graham (14 tackles) booted four goals in the first half.
Nuggetty midfielder Prestia (35 disposals, 11 clearances) dominated the stoppages, while Edwards (27, nine tackles) floated between the middle and half-back.
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Draftee Jack Ross' return to the AFL after close to a three-month layoff with an ankle injury was a tough battle, the midfielder (21 touches) playing a run-with role on Brownlow Medal fancy Patrick Cripps.
The Blue was typically dominant, recording 37 disposals (20 contested), while Sam Petrevski-Seton (18) and Kade Simpson (33 and nine rebound-50s) provided good run out of defence.
With the margin at 24 points at three-quarter time, Carlton had three failed shots on goal to open the fourth quarter.
Jack Riewoldt settled the nerves with a classic pack mark and conversion in the pouring rain.
But a fierce McGovern tackle on David Astbury was rewarded with a free kick, and the resultant goal cut the margin to just 17 points with seven minutes left on the clock.
But the Tigers hung tough, with late goals to Josh Caddy and Jason Castagna taking the margin to 28 points and a 14th win for the season.
Richmond will play reigning premiers West Coast for the first time this season at the MCG next Sunday.
RICHMOND 3.2 6.4 8.6 11.7 (73)
CARLTON 0.2 1.6 4.6 6.9 (45)
Richmond: Graham 4, Lynch 2, Riewoldt 2, Edwards, Caddy, Castagna
Carlton: McGovern 2, Kreuzer, Murphy, Casboult, Gibbons
Richmond: Prestia, Edwards, Vlastuin, Lambert, Graham
Carlton: Cripps, Simpson, Thomas, Petrevski-Seton, Silvagni
Umpires: Deboy, Whetton, Findlay
Official crowd: 51,039 at the MCG