Eric Belanger: 'I felt my teeth shatter right away'
In case you missed it this weekend, James Mirtle of the Globe and Mail wrote a delightful (if you're into horrific mouth injuries) piece on NHL players and their many dental issues. Featured is Caps center Eric Belanger and his recent teeth-shattering incident, which we covered extensively (too extensively?). Here's even more, if you can stomach it:
Perhaps the busiest dentist in recent years has been the Washington Capitals' Thomas Lenz, who helped repair former captain Chris Clark's broken palate bone in 2006 - "it was basically sitting in the back of his throat when I got to him" - in one of the more horrific dental injuries.
When Belanger took a stick to the mouth in Game 5 of the first round, he performed a little self-dentistry on the bench by fishing a broken tooth from his mouth. It's already become one of the enduring images of these playoffs, replayed over and over on the Internet and television.
Belanger was not wearing a mouthguard and Bergeron's stick - a composite model wrapped in Kevlar to make it more durable - tore a labial frenulum (a muscle attachment) inside his mouth.
"I felt my teeth shatter right away," he said. "I knew I was in trouble."
May 17, 2010; 9:42 AM ET
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