Although the tourists prevailed - late tries by wing Isaia Toeava and substitute prop John Afoa proved brutally harsh on Wales - it was far from an expected All Blacks cakewalk.
It is 57 years and 24 Tests since Wales toppled the red-hot 2011 World Cup favourites, but there were times when one of rugby's rarest sights materialised - a rattled New Zealand team on the ropes.
Wales trailed just 13-12 early in the second half, and with All Blacks forward Daniel Braid sin-binned and it was time to go for the jugular. However, Wales full-back Lee Byrne failed to find touch with a penalty, New Zealand counter- attacked and Hosea Gear claimed a killer second try.
It was, as Wales coach Warren Gatland put it afterwards, a "massive" moment in the game.
"It was the odd mistake again - a mad five minutes," said second-row forward Davies. "With 20 minutes to go, we really believed we could win. At 13-12 down and then 23-18 behind, I thought we were in with a big shout of the game. The fact they scored a try when they were down to 14 men just shows how good they are."
Scorers: Wales: Try: Byrne; Con: S Jones; Pens: S Jones 6. New Zealand: Tries: Gear 2, Muliaina, Toeava, Afoa; Cons: Carter 3; Pens: Carter 2.
Wales: Byrne, North, Shanklin, Hook, Tom James, Stephen Jones, Phillips, Jenkins, Matthew Rees, Adam Jones, Davies, Alun Wyn Jones, Lydiate (Powell 48), Warburton (Martyn Williams 75), Ryan Jones (Thomas 48). Subs not used: Bennett, Paul James, Richie Rees, Bishop.
New Zealand: Muliaina, Toeava, Smith, Williams (Nonu 49), Gear, Carter, Cowan, Woodcock, Mealamu (Hore 75), Owen Franks (Afoa 62), Thorn, Whitelock (Boric 55), Kaino, McCaw, Read (Braid 37).