EDEN PARK, Auckland -- So, what now? After all that a drawn series. Kieran Read and Sam Warburton shared the cup. It seems a strange way to draw a line under three wonderful Test matches, a series in which both sides did themselves proud and in front of as good a crowd as you will find in world rugby.
In a Test match for the ages, the All Blacks drew 15-15 with British & Irish Lions at Eden Park. There would be no records broken on the ground which has been a fortress for the men in black since 1994; the Lions' class of 2017 didn't emulate the heroes of 1971, but they will hold a special place in the tourists' history.
The Lions can leave with an immense sense of pride at everything they have achieved here. In the end they will rue missed opportunities and unforced errors but in a Test series where they led for just two minutes, they can have few complaints.
That said, the game will be remembered for Romain Poite's two calls in the 78th minute. Firstly he awarded a penalty against Ken Owens for being offside after Liam Williams knocked back a restart. After checking with the TMO, he changed it to accidental offside, much to Read's bemusement. It was strange at best.
The occasion was immense. The roads of Auckland were swimming with red; the Maro Itoje chant which has become synonymous with this series broke out in little pockets around the quayside. There was a wonderful convivial feeling to it all; those in red and black jerseys were exchanging stories in bars, and nervous anticipation was being negated by emptying the beer tanks.
But the match itself was not one for the faint-hearted. It was a rip-roaring game, with players putting bodies on the line and played at a pace where front-rowers were gasping for air after the first few throes of the match. No inch was given; every blade fought over. It was a belter.
The All Blacks were brilliant in the first half. How they only went into the break six points ahead, only they know. They squandered at least three brilliant try-scoring opportunities, with Julian Savea the chief culprit.
They were playing at an incredible tempo, and cutting the Lions' defence to shreds when they got the free-flowing passing going. Ngani Laumape was playing wonderfully at inside centre, but it was the two Barrett brothers who were chief orchestrators as Beauden was playing the width of Eden Park, forever mixing up the All Blacks' attack, while Jordie's palm down for Laumape to score was a piece of skill and calmness that belied his lack of Test experience.
Aaron Smith was also outstanding. He was forever picking away at the back of the scrum, eyes scanning for opportunities and then darting when there was the minutest of gaps. He was the heartbeat of this performance.
Losing here at Eden Park is just not in the All Black DNA; it's not the done thing. When they last fell here in 1994, two of their starting XV -- Anton Lienert-Brown and Jordie Barrett -- weren't born. The fortress remains strong as ever, but they were rocked on occasion.
In the second 40 they were on the backfoot a little more, and failed to secure the same territorial gains as the first half, but they still kept the Lions out of their five-metre line with a series of bone-crunching tackles -- Brodie Retallick got through an almighty amount of work -- as the tourists also did their cause no good with a series of infuriating errors.
In the 10-minute spell when Jerome Kaino was on the naughty step, they messed up the first lineout, got pinged for a forward pass and then knocked on as they built tempo. It was an error count that would end up preventing them from getting the victory. They simply didn't take their chances as they frequently took two steps forward, only to lose their footing.
But considering everything they have navigated here in New Zealand, this was a heroic effort. Sam Warburton, Jonathan Davies and Itoje were immense. Warburton has captained the side magnificently and he was all over the turf, causing havoc. Itoje carried well, and was an annoying presence for the All Blacks.
And then there was Davies. Arguably the Lions' player of the series, he was just brilliant both in attack and defence. There was a moment in the second half when he caught Jordie Barrett and caused the All Blacks fullback to slice his kick out on the full. It was a moment which saw his teammates gravitate towards him to give slaps on backs, and head taps.
This was a series which had four years of build-up. It didn't disappoint, but for it to end in a draw is a strange phenomenon. We're not used to this. But across three pulsating Test matches, rugby was propelled into the oval-ball spotlight, and two teams left nothing on the field.
It has been an honour to be there to watch it and the Lions once again proved why they are such an important institution. Do we really need to wait 12 years to come back here again?