Up against the Blues in their first game, the southern side showed great discipline and control to punish the Blues' infringements as first five-eighths Ollie Lewis landed four penalty goals and two conversions in their 34-24 win.
The Blues managed three tries and a penalty try, but first five-eighths Jock McKenzie landed only one conversion, by comparison.
The Chiefs also impressed in taking a 40-26 win over the Hurricanes side while the Highlanders were rampant in scoring a 70-17 win over the hastily-assembled New Zealand Barbarians side.
Flanker and captain Sean Withy scored three tries before being subbed in the second half for tougher contests ahead. Highlanders first five-eighths Cam Millar scored a try and converted all 10 of his side's tries in an impressive display.
Teams play again on Wednesday when the Blues will be up against the Barbarians, the Hurricanes against the Highlanders and the Crusaders against the Chiefs.
Chiefs 40 (Gideon Wrampling, Scott Jury, Nikora Broughten, Tevita Ofa, Josh Jacomb tries; Lucas Cashmore 3 con, 2 pen; Jacomb pen) Hurricanes 26 (Fifita Lokai, Dominic Ropeti, Riley Higgins 2 tries; Aidan Morgan 3 con). HT: 25-12
Highlanders 70 (Nathan Hastie, Cam Millar, Sean Withy 3, Jermaine Pepe, Harry Hansen, Arese Poliko, Peceli Malanicagi, Harry Press tries; Millar 10 con) NZ Barbarians 17 (G Methven, Troy McIvor tries; J Parker 2 con, pen). HT; 35-10
Crusaders 34 (Macca Springer, Corey Kellow, George Bell tries; Ollie Lewis 2 con, 4 pen; Chay Fihaki pen) Blues 24 (Penalty try; Jock McKenzie, Manu Paea, Soane Vikena tries; McKenzie con). HT: 17-14