Fan favourite in Guelph joins Panthers' men's hockey squad

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Storm's leader in career games coming to UPEI

UPEI Panthers

A five-year veteran of the Ontario Hockey League will wear the UPEI Panthers’ colours this fall.

The university announced Wednesday the commitment of right-winger Cody McNaughton, who scored 81 goals in 313 career games with the Guelph Storm. 

“I pride myself on being the ultimate team guy. I try to give my very best every shift and do whatever it takes to make the team successful,” said McNaughton. “From everything I have learned about the team and the fans, that is the way the Panthers are built, and I expect to fit right in this fall.”

The five-foot-10, 180-pound Pembroke, Ont., native is the Storm’s career leader in games played. His high-energy and feisty style made him a fan favourite in Guelph where he was voted as the fan club’s most popular player last season.

“Cody doesn’t mind getting his nose dirty, he is very responsible defensively and, as his numbers suggest, he can score big goals,” said Panthers’ coach Forbes MacPherson. “The fans in Guelph loved him because he’s an energetic player who comes to play. I expect that will endear him to the Panther faithful at MacLauchlan Arena.” 

The fans in Guelph loved him because he’s an energetic player who comes to play. I expect that will endear him to the Panther faithful at MacLauchlan Arena. Forbes MacPherson, UPEI Panthers head coach

McNaughton said the decision to join UPEI came down to two main factors, conversations with the coaching staff and a commitment to winning.

“The Panthers have a proud tradition of success. Forbie and the staff have this team moving in the right direction and I just want to do everything I can to help this team win a championship,” he said. “At this point in my career, I want to focus on getting a quality education and improving as a hockey player.”

The move reunites McNaughton with former Guelph teammates Matthew Maione and Brock Beukeboom.

Friends of Men’s Hockey will host the annual banquet Thursday night at UPEI’s Wanda Wyatt Dining Hall. Guest speaker will be Dr. Bill Montelpare, a leading researcher in reducing the risk of concussions and increasing the accuracy of determining when an athlete who has suffered a concussion is ready to return to play. Tickets are on sale now. 

Organizations: Panthers, Ontario Hockey League

Geographic location: Guelph, Pembroke

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