Wigan coach Shaun Wane was taken aback by the size of his side's 50-8 rout of defending Stobart Super League champions Leeds at Headingley.
The table-toppers overcame the absence of six first-choice forwards to run in nine tries against a desperately disappointing Rhinos team and make it 11 wins in a row.
"If I'm perfectly honest, I didn't expect us to score that many points," Wane said. "I would have been happy with a win.
"I think under the circumstances, it's the best we've played this year.
"We had people out with injury and suspension and people playing with injuries but with the players showing character to come to a place like this, it was a great effort.
"All my senior players stood up - they were great for me today - but I need to give special mention to the people who stepped up, Dom Crosby and Rhodri Lloyd."
Full-back Sam Tomkins, the man identified before kick-off by Leeds coach Brian McDermott as the biggest threat, justified the call with a sparkling display while winger Josh Charnley contributed 18 points with a try and seven goals.
With players of the calibre of Gareth Hock, Harrison Hansen and Pat Richards to come into the side, Wane warned Wigan's rivals that the best is yet to come from the league leaders.
"We were on fire today," he said. "I don't want to sound arrogant or big-headed but we've not got that consistent killer instinct yet, although it will come.
"The players know I am hard to satisfy and they buy into that."
Leeds winger Ryan Hall scored a try in each half but the Rhinos were simply outclassed by their opponents and, after a second consecutive home defeat left them languishing in seventh place, they have little time to dwell on their sorry plight with a trip to Warrington next up.
The champions could even find themselves out of the top eight by Sunday evening if other results go against them.
"Wigan were on fire," admitted Leeds coach Brian McDermott. "They gained some momentum early in the game and built on it.
"Tonight wasn't good enough. We're not where we need to be and we haven't been for a while.
"When the bigger teams have asked the questions, we haven't come up answers and it's a concern.
Leeds' misery was compounded by the loss of half-back Danny McGuire with a pulled abductor muscle five minutes before half-time.