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Cody McNaughton

From the Stands: McNaughton takes licking, keeps ticking

From the Stands
By Paul Osborne 

We all know hockey players are tough but Guelph Storm forward Cody McNaughton gets an extra star for toughness this past weekend.

Saturday night in the team’s 2-0 loss in Barrie, McNaughton drove hard to the net and took a crosscheck in the mouth.

The result was two front teeth broken, left dangling, that had to be pulled by the Colts’ dentist.

The worst part was that the injury not only snapped the teeth in half, but fractured the nerve centre of the tooth.

“That kid is tough as nails,” said Storm dentist Dr. Jim Fox. “I saw a Guelph police officer have the same thing happen to one tooth recently and he was in tears. (With the nerves exposed) every breath makes the pain off the charts.”

So not only did McNaughton finish the game, he was in the dental chair at 9:30 Sunday morning getting an emergency double root canal.

Now I have never had a root canal, but I know a few people who have and they just wanted to load up on pain killers and curl into a little ball.

Not McNaughton.

He left the dentist office with frozen gums, had two protein shakes then suited up for the game against Sudbury at 2 p.m.

He even refused more freezing after the first period. And, oh yeah, he scored a beautiful goal as well.

McNaughton laughed at the fact he and his teammates call their teeth “jibs” and he is down a few this year.

“I’d rather still have the teeth in my mouth,” said McNaughton, “But it’s not like it’s a broken leg or something.”

The Petawawa native lost another of his front teeth earlier in the year so he’s down three jibs, for those keeping count.

“We started the root canal therapy (Sunday) and we’ll finish it up later this week,” said Fox. “After that he’ll have to see a gum specialist to see if the teeth are salvageable.”

Fox says he has dealt with eight serious mouth injuries already this season, and joked that as the playoff run heats up he’s “seeing about one a week.”

One thing is for sure, with the state of his mouth, McNaughton is unlikely to appear on the Smile Cam at future Storm games.

From the Land of Oz . . . The Storm’s fourth line was very efficient Sunday in their 7-2 thrashing of the Sudbury Wolves. Patrick Watling had a goal and two assists, with linemates Ryan Horvat (1G, 1A) and Brody Milne (1G), just back in the line-up after recovering from a broken jaw, each seeing the score sheet. “I would put my fourth line against anyone when they play like that,” said coach Scott Walker . . . On Saturday, Guelph lost 2-0 on the road against Barrie . . . Friday night the Storm downed Niagara 5-3 on the strength of Brock McGinn’s hat trick. Rookie Robby Fabbri also had a strong game notching two assists . . . Despite winning two of three on the weekend they failed to gain any ground in the standings. They still sit fifth in the conference, five points behind fourth place Kitchener (with a game in hand) and seven behind third place Owen Sound. They are on the road this weekend with games in Sault Ste. Marie Friday night and Sudbury Sunday afternoon.

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