Dunedin - The pace of the All Blacks in attack and into contact was the key difference in their 46-6 victory in the third test on Saturday, according to Wales coach Warren Gatland.
The All Blacks' counter-attack was ruthless in Dunedin, with flyhalf Beauden Barrett scoring two tries and finishing with 26 points in the match that sealed a 3-0 series sweep for the world champions.
The visitors impressed with their willingness to spread the ball and the sustained pressure they put the All Blacks under in the first two matches of the series, but were unable to keep pace with them in the final match.
Barrett, winger Ben Smith and fullback Israel Dagg were superb on the counter-attack, exploiting space and creating mismatches against forwards as they scored six tries in total.
"I thought the big difference was the pace of the All Blacks back three," Gatland told reporters. "They put us under a huge amount of pressure when they were bringing the ball back (and) we missed a lot of tackles.
"At the end of the day they are the world champions so it was a big lesson for a lot of us in terms of what he learned and what we can apply going forward."
Gatland said he felt the All Blacks defence had been "outstanding".
One period shortly before halftime typified their defensive work evident throughout the series when despite controlling the ball for several phases, the Welsh found themselves being driven back down field.
The visitors were within touching distance at 18-6 and camped on the All Blacks' tryline, only to be repelled time and again before the ball was turned over.
"We needed to score before halftime to stay in the match but they got away from us," Gatland said. "They defended very well (and) were very strong at the breakdown and won the collisions.
"They're not slowing down ... they're accelerating into the contact. And that's something we need to take back to the northern hemisphere.
"We need to be more dynamic and accelerate into the contact areas whether its with or without the ball."