The All Black centre stocks look decidely thin following the news that the Hurricanes captain Conrad Smith will miss the first part of the Rugby Championship following eye surgery.
Smith will miss at least the first two tests against Australia after having surgery to repair a detached retina suffered in their last Super Rugby match against the Chiefs.
It creates further issues for the All Black selectors with fellow midfielder Sonny Bill Williams off to Japan.
Richard Kahui is still recovering from shoulder surgery, meaning there will be someone new in the backline.
Our rugby reporter suggests that could be filled by the Highlanders Tamati Ellison or Ben Smith or the Crusaders Ryan Crotty or Robbie Fruen.
Another option is to move Dan Carter and Ma'a Nonu out one and start Aaron Cruden at 10.
Steve Hansen's first squad will be announced on August 5th.