Leeds’ top pack performer Jamie Jones-Buchanan is taking the positives from their first Super League defeat of the season against Widnes on Sunday.
On their return from Australia and their World Club Challenge defeat to Melbourne, a depleted Rhinos side were beaten 23-6 by last season’s basement boys.
They led 6-4 at half time but were gradually ground down by the Vikings, who recorded their second win of the year.
Jones-Buchanan said: “You can always look for positives.
“It galvanises the boys sometimes. A good kick up the backside can do you good and you get a big response.
“But the lads are hurting, I’m hurting, it’s upsetting losing like that, but it happens in professional sport.”
Just like coach Brian McDermott, Jones-Buchanan refused to blame the trip to Australia for the defeat, on a weekend that all three teams returning from Down Under lost.
He added: “No, not for me. I just think we weren’t good enough with the ball, we didn’t ask enough questions.
“We’ve had two good wins so far, so we’ll make sure we’re in better shape and go out again and get ready for Catalans next week.”
The Rhinos will look to get back on track against the Dragons on Friday, when they will hopefully have some players returning to action.