TAYLOR Walker has asserted himself as Adelaide captain and led an Easter Sunday mauling at Adelaide Oval, booting six goals as the Crows smashed North Melbourne by 77 points.
Walker's aggression and his ability to find teammates in scoring positions silenced any critics of his appointment as skipper, with the inspirational key forward finishing with 15 marks and 22 disposals.
His dominance saw opponent Joel Tippett subbed at half-time as the Crows marched to a dominant 21.14 (140) to 9.9 (63) win.
Patrick Dangerfield celebrated his birthday with 25 disposals and two goals, while Richard Douglas was a constant driving force with six inside 50s and 28 possessions.
Former Western Bulldog Shaun Higgins impressed in his first outing for North Melbourne with four goals, while Ben Cunnington (27 possessions) and Ben Gibson (22) were solid through the midfield.
Crows coach Phil Walsh was thrilled with the victory but said he was already switching focus to next week's clash against Collingwood.
"We had a moment in the third quarter where I thought we lost our way for a little bit but got back on track, round one to perform like that in front of a really good crowd I thought for Easter Sunday was really satisfying," Walsh said.
"But we all know it's a long season ahead of us – we've got Collingwood in six days."
Sunday marked 25 years since Adelaide's first match in the AFL – an 86-point win over 1991's eventual premiers Hawthorn – and it was apparent early that the club would replicate that result.
The Kangaroos dropped tall forward Ben Brown from their starting 22 in order to generate more run, but they couldn't keep up with the Crows, who had nearly doubled North Melbourne's uncontested possession total at the first break.
Higgins' two goals from his first two kicks as a Kangaroo were the club's only highlight in the opening half.
Key forward Drew Petrie was sent into defence to deal with the endless torrent of inside 50s but whenever the likes of Cunnington or Andrew Swallow were able to win possession, their opponents were on hand to prevent any drive.
During a stunning first half, Walker kicked his 200th career goal and Eddie Betts and then Rory Sloane added to their tallies to push the half-time lead out to 63 points.
The Kangaroos emerged in the second half with much greater intensity and silenced the home crowd with five quick goals, at one stage getting back to within 30 points.
But Adelaide subdued the fightback with majors to Walker and Rory Laird and while Higgins kicked a fourth, the Crows' lead was never threatened.
North Melbourne fell away again in the final term as Adelaide restored its lead back out past 10 goals and eased to a commanding season-opening victory.
Kangaroos coach Brad Scott was understandably furious.
"It was just a really disappointing performance, clearly the only thing you can put that down to in the short term is some terrific pressure from the opposition," Scott said.
"Their appetite for the contest was much better than ours – that's an indictment."
Eddie Betts bursts through a North Melbourne tackle on his way to four goals. Picture: AFL Media
ADELAIDE 6.4 12.10 15.12 21.14 (140)
NORTH MELBOURNE 2.1 3.1 9.4 9.9 (63)
Adelaide: Walker 6, Betts 4, Jenkins 3, Sloane 2, Dangerfield 2, Smith, Lynch, Laird, Cameron
North Melbourne: Higgins 4, Thomas 2, Bastinac, Petrie, Gibson
Adelaide: Walker, Dangerfield, Sloane, Douglas, Laird, Betts, Chene
North Melbourne: Higgins, Cunnington, Goldstein, Gibson, Thomas
Adelaide: Brown (corked thigh)
North Melbourne: Nil
Adelaide: Jarryd Lyons replaced Luke Brown (corked thigh) during the third quarter
North Melbourne: Kayne Turner replaced Joel Tippett at half-time
Umpires: Fisher, Nicholls, Mollison
Official crowd: 46,491 at Adelaide Oval