Paddy Dow's first competitive hit-out for Carlton was a thing of beauty at times but his broad smile after the Blues' 22-point win over St Kilda was anything but.
The No.3 pick kicked two goals and gave off another in an eye-catching display at Ikon Park on Wednesday night.
But he lost half a front tooth in a first-half collision that occurred while his mouthguard was tucked into his sock.
"When you've got a first-round draft pick willing to put his head over the ball like that, I think it gives his players a lot of belief and trust in him," assistant coach David Teague said.
"I don't know the details (of the collision) but what I do know is that he puts his head over the ball, he looked really strong over the contest and his burst out, his explosiveness, was very exciting."
Dow's performance was just one of several highlights in the Blues' 13.11 (89) to 9.13 (67) win in front of 8098 fans.
Brendon Bolton's often-dour side were difficult to score against last season but they moved the ball with a daring and speed against the Saints that they have rarely shown under the third-year coach.
"It was a good start ... we saw some of the things that we've been working on," Teague said.
"The next layer of our plan was to add a little bit of offence to our game and we saw a little bit of that.
"We've still got a little bit of work to do with the finish and the execution so we're still a work-in-progress.
"But I think our fans should be pretty excited by what they saw out there."
Patrick Cripps, Liam Jones and Matthew Kreuzer were also key players, while former Gold Coast player Jarrod Garlett displayed breathtaking speed.
He left the game with a shoulder injury in the third quarter and will be assessed further on Thursday.