A year after St Kilda had their last great win, Richmond have taught them an AFL lesson.
Dion Prestia returned to top form and Jack Riewoldt kicked four goals on his extended family's special night as the reigning premiers mauled the Saints by 54 points.
Richmond pounded St Kilda in the first half, kicking 11 goals to two.
The Saints rallied after halftime, but the damage was done and the Tigers easily won 16.15 (111) to 8.9 (57).
"We certainly were given a footy lesson tonight - in fact we spent most of our time (post-match) talking about Richmond),' said Saints coach Alan Richardson.
"We didn't get near them early, they were just way too physical and way too dynamic - that was disappointing.
"The feedback was why are they so consistently strong, even in their defeats ... I would hope the players have real clarity on what that looks like."
It is only 12 months since St Kilda went berserk against Richmond in the first half another July night match against Richmond at Etihad Stadium.
The Saints kicked 14 goals to one in the first half and won by 67 points, raising fundamental questions about the Tigers' credentials.
Since that crossroads moment, St Kilda's record is six wins, 16 losses and a draw.
They remain without a finals appearance since 2011.
Reigning premiers Richmond are 21-5 and sit on top of the ladder.
The Saints had won three of their past four and appeared capable of pushing the Tigers.
Richmond kicked six goals to one to kill off the game by quarter time and they led by 58 points at the main break.
The Saints also had a scare when Bailey Rice was hurt in a marking contest, but he returned to the field in the second quarter.
St Kilda had a rare highlight at the start of the third term when Jack Steven volleyed a goal of the year contender out of mid-air.
But the Tigers already had everything they needed from the night, a week after losing to GWS.
"I thought we played better last week - our first half (against St Kilda) was pretty scintillating, to be fair," Tigers coach Damien Hardwick said.
"Those games go one of two ways - it either turns into a 100-point win or it peters out to the result we got tonight.
"They (St Kilda) were the better side in the second half, but there were some pleasing signs for us, no doubt."
Daniel Rioli starred in attack and Dustin Martin showcased some of his best form this season.
The game raised $1.5 million for Maddie's Vision, the charity fronted by Riewoldt's cousin and former Saints captain Nick Riewoldt in honour of his younger sister.
Maddie Riewoldt died three years ago from a rare bone marrow disease.
Seb Ross, Jade Gresham and David Armitage were best for the Saints on a rough night.