All Blacks centre Sonny Bill Williams' cursed run of injuries is continuing after he was ruled out of this week's blockbuster Test against Ireland in Dublin.
Inside centre Williams suffered a shoulder joint blow just before halftime in Saturday's 16-15 win over England at Twickenham and was replaced by Ryan Crotty.
The grade one damage is enough to sideline him from the clash with world No.2 Ireland on Saturday, with Ngani Laumape joining the tourists as cover.
Williams could yet be fit for their final Test of the year, against Italy in Rome next week.
That would be just his sixth international appearance of 2018, having suffered wrist, knee and shoulder ailments which also restricted his Super Rugby output for the Blues.
The 33-year-old has played 80 minutes in just one Test this year - last month's win over Australia in Yokohama when he earned a 50th cap.
Williams is fighting to keep his first-choice midfield berth ahead of next year's Rugby World Cup, with coach Steve Hansen conceding the 33-year-old has struggled to find his best form because of a lack of game time.
"There's a pretty good chance he'll be right for Italy so he'll stay but Ngani is coming over to make sure if we lose someone this week we've got someone," Hansen said.
"Everyone else is good. So we should have a full deck of cards to pick from."
Laumape scored a hat-trick when a virtual second-string New Zealand team hammered Japan in Tokyo a week ago.
However, Crusaders teammates Crotty and Jack Goodhue are likely to be the starting midfield against Ireland, with Hansen unlikely to veer far from the team who grimly held out the English.