Hearts were in mouths as the Hurricanes loose forward lay prone on Suncorp Stadium, having taken the ball into contact during Saturday's 34-15 win over the Reds. He was eventually helped from the field and diagnosed with a calf injury.
That's better than a knee or ankle, assuming the strain is as minor as the Hurricanes have suggested.
"He's pulled up pretty well considering what he looked like when he was on the ground there. He's got a niggly calf and he'd be pretty doubtful for this week," Hurricanes backs coach Jason Holland said on Monday afternoon.
That's coach-speak for Savea having no chance of being fit to play the Waratahs at Westpac Stadium on Friday. But the curiosity now is whether the 23-year-old will be out for several weeks beyond this one.
"Hopefully not, but we'll find out more in the next few days. But it's not as bad as it first looked like," said Holland.
The injury update for hooker Dane Coles, wing Cory Jane and lock Vaea Fifita was more definite.
"Encouraging news with those three. They're all on track to be available for this weekend," Holland said.
"They'll obviously be used in different ways but, at this stage, the three of them are all good to go."
The bench might be the most likely destination for Jane and Fifita, who've yet to play a game this season. Jane injured a neck during the team's Captain's Run in Tokyo, ahead of round one, while Fifita (ankle) went down in a heap in about the same part of Suncorp Stadium as Savea did on Saturday, during the Brisbane Global Tens.
Fifita's return will be especially welcome, given the workload locks Michael Fatialofa and Mark Abbott have had.
Captain Coles should slot straight back into the starting line-up, but mystery surrounds which Barrett he'll be asking to take kicks at goal.
Jordie fulfilled that role in Brisbane, taking over from big brother Beauden. A rib niggle was the reason behind last weekend's arrangement but the plan for Friday is still be hatched.
"It's something we discuss towards the end of training on Thursday," Jordie Barrett said.
If the brothers can't come to an agreement, Holland said the coaches would intervene.
The younger Barrett has some boot on him and was reasonably accurate against the Reds, succeeding with four of his six attempts.
"I was happy enough. I missed a couple of close ones that I thought I should've got, but that happens," he said.
The Waratahs will come to Wellington fresh from Sunday's 41-22 defeat at home to the Crusaders. They've only won two matches this season but retain the respect of the Hurricanes.
"The breakdown is a massive part of the game against the Aussies," said Holland.
"We want to play with tempo and playing with tempo means we've got to move those boys pretty quick and we've got to carry well. That's a bit of a focus for us this week and it was for us last week as well."
Photo By: BRADLEY KANARIS/Getty Images (The Hurricanes expect to have barnstorming loose forward Ardie Savea back on the field soon).