BEN Brown was reinstated to arrest Melbourne's scoring concerns, but instead it was Christian Petracca and Tom McDonald who combined to punish Port Adelaide on Thursday night. 

After a three-week stretch averaging just 62 points, the Demons bettered last week's season-low total of 55 to half-time in a blistering opening at Adelaide Oval. 

Petracca's second term set the game alight before McDonald (three goals) put the wasteful Power to the sword, 12.14 (86) to 8.7 (55). 

It sees the Demons momentarily reclaim top spot from the Western Bulldogs, while the Power's loss – their fourth of the year against the current top-four – saw them drop more than five per cent to allow Geelong to jump them into fourth.  

The Power's night was further soured with a right knee concern to youngster Zak Butters, who was subbed out playing his first game back in more than three months after left knee and ankle setbacks. 

The travelling side took a six-point lead into the first break with McDonald looming ominous, before Petracca took the game into his own hands. 

The Brownlow Medal fancy laid a crunching tackle on Power midfielder Sam Powell-Pepper either side of his two goals for the term and blitzed the highly anticipated midfield battle. Petracca picked up 15 disposals and 484 metres gained to half-time and finished with 33 touches and three majors in a clear best-on-ground outing. 

The Demons' twin towers of Steven May and Jake Lever were well supported by Harrison Petty to break down the Power across half-back before Charlie Dixon kicked a goal against the flow on half-time to bridge the margin to 17 points. 

The hosts owned the momentum early in the third quarter with Mitch Georgiades threatening in attack, but they failed to take their chances as McDonald kicked the final two goals of the term. 

Small forward Kozzy Pickett bounced back into form and kicked his third goal in the final term, while Clayton Oliver was again prolific with 21 of his 33 possessions contested. 

Butters limps off in comeback
Returning after a 13-week layoff due to ankle and knee setbacks in his left leg, Zak Butters was subbed out with a right knee concern in the third term. The young dynamo landed heavily while taking an intercept mark on the wing and instantly reached for his right knee. After assessment from the doctors and an attempt to strap his knee up, Butters' night was called. Power football boss Chris Davies told Channel Seven the club felt it was a "slight stretch" of his medial ligament that would require a scan.

Demons recruit takes on new look 
Recalled for his first match for his new side since round nine, Ben Brown played higher up the ground in a distinct difference to his previous stint at North Melbourne. The 28-year-old failed to hit the scoreboard but provided a valuable hit-up target across half-forward with five of his 10 disposals coming in the second term as Melbourne went on a barnstorming run. The Demons targeted Tom McDonald nine times inside forward 50, ahead of Brown (eight), Max Gawn (three) and Luke Jackson (two). 

Aliir the Power's everywhere man 
With Port Adelaide again opting for Scott Lycett as its only recognised ruckman, Aliir Aliir was thrown into the middle for parts of the opening half in an attempt to counter the Demons' double punch of Max Gawn and Luke Jackson. While he looked damaging roaming across half-back, Aliir was asked to sacrifice his own game to stem the flow of easy ball for the Demons into attack having not recorded a single hitout for the season prior to the match. Ken Hinkley then threw his first-year recruit forward in the final term to address a lack of presence across half-forward but it was to no avail as the Demons stormed to victory.

PORT ADELAIDE          2.2       5.3       7.5       8.7 (55)
MELBOURNE               3.2       8.4       10.9     12.14 (86) 

Port Adelaide: 
Georgiades 2, Dixon 2, Amon, Wines, Rozee, McKenzie
Melbourne: McDonald 3, Petracca 3, Pickett 3, Jackson, Spargo, Fritsch

Port Adelaide:
 Boak, Amon, Wines, Georgiades, Aliir
Melbourne: Petracca, McDonald, Oliver, Salem, Gawn, May 

Port Adelaide:
 Butters (knee)
Melbourne: Nil 

Port Adelaide:
 Frederick (replaced Butters)
Melbourne: Sparrow (unused)

Crowd: TBC at Adelaide Ova