Eric Sione is the latest victim of the Lions' loosehead prop curse.
With Reggie Goodes (eye socket) and Arden David-Perrot (knee) already sidelined, Sione (concussion) has now been ruled out of Wellington's NPC date with Bay of Plenty in Mt Maunganui tomorrow night.
Wellington's 43-30 loss to new premiership leaders Auckland at Eden Park on Saturday was a painful experience for all involved, but in particular Sione. In his second Lions start, Sione gave away a penalty try for a professional foul and was later forced from the field with a head knock.
Sione failed a second psychometric test with concussion symptoms yesterday and returned to Wellington.
Whetu Henry boarded a plane in the other direction, although Solomona Sakalia is more likely to wear the now dreaded No 1 jersey tomorrow night.
"Whetu's about our fifth or sixth front-rower so the curse of the jersey seems to have followed us a bit," said Wellington coach Chris Boyd after a team review of Saturday's loss.
Previous leaders Wellington are now third in the premiership standings as a gap opens up between the top four teams and the also-rans, including Bay of Plenty.
"All we need to do is to keep that separation and we'll be OK," Boyd said.
"But Bay of Plenty will obviously be desperate to avoid relegation, so neither side is going to lie down."
Having had 24 hours to mull over his second defeat of the season, Boyd came armed with plenty of interesting statistics yesterday.
While conceding 43 points was obviously "way too many", Boyd said the Lions actually finished the game with 92 per cent tackle accuracy.
The problem was every time Auckland breached Wellington's defence, they scored a try.
And while the game finished four tries apiece, Auckland enjoyed a steady stream of points through the boot of Blues discard Gareth Anscombe, who almost outscored the Lions himself with 28 points.
Without blaming his decisions for the loss, Boyd believed referee Bryce Lawrence certainly hadn't helped his team's cause.
"There's absolutely no doubt they weren't all correct.
"Some penalties were borderline but you're never going to get 100 per cent accuracy from the referee.
"So you've got to try and work out what his interpretation is and live with it," Boyd said.
Wellington had a plan to try to run Auckland off their feet, given they were backing up from a game against Taranaki on Wednesday.
But Wayne Pivac's side attended rucks in good numbers and dominated the collisions.
"They're big fellas and they're physical, and we thought if we could move them around a fair bit, that we might be able to take the sting out of the tail. But we didn't achieve that which was disappointing," Boyd said.
Other than Sione, Boyd said "half a dozen" Lions were nursing minor niggles and he would pick his team to play Bay of Plenty today.
Meanwhile, veteran lock Jason Eaton has verbally agreed to play for the Hurricanes next season.
The 30-year-old said he had reached a verbal agreement with Hurricanes coach Mark Hammett, although he was yet to sign a contract and there remained a slight chance he could move overseas instead.
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