With the result beyond doubt, the Blues kicked eight of the last 12 goals to trim the final margin, which had blown out to 56 points at three-quarter time.
It was a clash full of pre-game storylines, but the upshot on Friday night was that Collingwood (5-2) looms as a top-four team, while the Blues (2-5) are fast losing relevance in 2014.
High-priced recruit Dale Thomas also remained a talking point, but not for the right reasons after a flat game that saw him finish with 14 possessions against his former team.
That meant nothing to Malthouse, however, and the first three quarters quickly wiped out any optimism back-to-back wins had generated for Carlton.
"Their depth goes a long way, it's not just the midfield – that's why they're a top-four side at the moment.
"They've got every right to think they're a top-four side."
It was hardly Collingwood's finest performance of the season, but coach Nathan Buckley would have been pleased with the form of young players Tom Langdon, Jamie Elliott, Jarrod Witts and Jack Frost.
In his first game for the season, Marley Williams also made an impressive return slotting into the back six, holding Jeff Garlett to one goal and seven possessions.
"When we got to three-quarter time, we'd controlled the game thoroughly. There wasn't one facet of it that we hadn't had on our terms.
"We had eight players out there who have played less than 25 games … that probably explains a little bit of what you got in the last quarter."
Collingwood's unselfishness inside the forward 50
continually saw the ball re-directed to players with an easier shot on goal, while midfielder Dayne Beams finished with four goals, two in the final term when the defensive intensity of both sides fell away.
Playing against his premiership teammates for the first time, Thomas had just five possessions in the first half, including a mis-kicked set shot from 40 metres that didn't make it to the goal line.
Indeed, poor kicking from both sides was an unwanted feature in a flat match played out in front of 68,251 fans – the lowest crowd between these teams since 2007.
Through a scrappy first half, young Magpie Langdon stood up and used the football better than anyone as Collingwood kicked seven unanswered goals before half time to build a 37-point lead.
The Magpies continually did the disciplined things while the Blues took low percentage shots from the boundary, entering the main break with a score of just 1.5 (11), their lowest first-half score since 2009.
Perhaps more damning was a measly tackle count of 21, with six Blues failing to wrap up an opponent in the first half.
Carlton faces St Kilda at Etihad Stadium next week, while the Magpies have a bye.