Cup stud Toth good to go

IAN BUSBY, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:04 AM ET

The last time the Calgary Roughnecks had Kaleb Toth in the lineup, the veteran's big gun was on target.

In a sign of a team getting the bounces, Toth scored a goal from mid-floor in the Champion's Cup final victory over the New York Titans.

This season, the Riggers have struggled with the only remaining franchise original not on the floor due to a hamstring injury.

Those lucky bounces aren't going the defending National Lacrosse League champion's way without Toth, so maybe he can change things tonight when the Roughnecks (1-2) visit the Edmonton Rush (5 p.m., nll.com, Rexall Place).

"I will try to help on the floor as much as possible, whether it's offensively, defensive or the powerplay," said Toth, who only missed one game in franchise history previous to this season.

"I will do whatever my body allows me to. I don't know how much difference one player can make. I'm hoping it can be a lot."

Sitting out was new to Toth and not something he wants to repeat. But after getting injured in the final training camp practice, the 32-year-old took his time returning hoping to avoid a re-aggravation of the ailment.

Although he isn't quite 100% yet, Toth is happy to end his time on the sideline.

"It was tough," Toth said about sitting out. "It brought me to tears. I want to play bad.

"I know I'm getting up there in years and I know there isn't that many left in me. I want to play as many as I can now when I still can. When you get hurt, you start thinking of the worst."

In helping the Roughnecks win the title last season, Toth had a career year coming off a down one.

The Calgary product had 33 goals and a career-high 47 helpers, which was a 30-point improvement from the 2008 season.

Toth is hoping to have good chemistry with newcomer Craig Conn, but his return should also be a boon for captain Tracey Kelusky.

The two longtime teammates play a great two-man game and Toth is an expert at opening space for Kelusky's shots.

"I've been playing with Tracey for a long time and I know where he likes to be picked and he knows how I like to be picked," Toth said.

"I know when I pick him where I should go and where he is going and whether he's shooting or passing. It comes as second nature when you play with somebody so long."

IAN.BUSBY@SUNMEDIA.CA


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