Gov. Andrew Cuomo was in his element on Friday.

Everyone, from the pundits in the press, social media theoreticians, the liberal activists and his bete noir, the mayor of New York City, were dead wrong about the challenge he faced against Cynthia Nixon.

And it’s easy to see what his Friday morning press conference was: A reminder, perhaps subtle or not, to everyone that he’s at the top of the political food chain.

“Again, I have to go through the numbers, but I believe I got more votes in the primary than any governor in history,” Cuomo said. “That is saying something. African-American community turnout was almost at presidential levels. Think about that.”

He also said, “When you look at how sweeping the voters were yesterday, it was upstate, it was downstate, it was white, black, brown, it was across the board. it was a vast proportion of New Yorkers.”

Cuomo’s closest aides have been taking something of a victory lap, too, raising some eyebrows for pointedly drinking cosmos in reference to Cynthia Nixon’s Sex and the City role.

And perhaps, after a primary in which the governor and his team felt, well, besieged by negative stories, the Nixon campaign’s dunks and the implication that Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez’s victory in June could be replicated statewide, some ball spiking was also a useful relief valve following all that stress.

But the party may not last long.

Cuomo is vying for a third term, which can be a snake bit period of time for anyone in politics, whether there is a progressive anti-Trump wave or not. Ask George Pataki or Michael Bloomberg or Ed Koch or even Mario Cuomo. Voters either denied these chief executives a fourth term or they bowed out of office with the public picking someone who was their temperamental opposite.

Republican Marc Molinaro wants to deny Cuomo that third term this November and the general election now begins in earnest.

For now, Cuomo has not fully articulated what he wants out of a third term. He’s proposed a codification of the Affordable Care Act in state law and will likely move forward with a legalization of marijuana. And, should Democrats retake a full majority in the state Senate, it’s likely changes to the state’s voting laws and the Reproductive Health Act will be acted on with, what is for Albany, relative ease.

But there are more nettlesome issues to sort out, including rent control and a liberal push for single-payer health care, which Cuomo backs on the federal level.

At the same time, Democrats will be sending to Albany unabashedly liberal freshmen who defeated former members of the Independent Democratic Conference and will feel emboldened to make changes — and fast. Already, Senate Republicans are running a campaign centered around themselves being the only thing between voters and full-on socialism.

It’s possible Democratic lawmakers from the suburbs and upstate will have a moderating influence if the party takes power and the conference’s leadership will likely make that argument.

Cuomo, too, is pointing out Democrats from those areas will have to be elected in order to hand the party a majority. “The personalities changed,” Cuomo said, but that doesn’t make a majority.

“They’re going to have to go win in Suffolk and Nassau and the Hudson Valley and that’s where they’re going to have to win,” he said.

Cuomo is adept at recalibrating. Term two was all about anticipating such a primary challenge as the one he faced this year.

But when does Cuomo’s shelf life expire? Will it portend a presidential bid in 2020? Is he New York political world’s version of an apex predator, with no one big enough to chase him down?

Cuomo after eight years has left already an indelible stamp on New York’s political culture.

Third terms have not been historically fun for incumbents and what problems lie on the horizon are difficult to foresee.