A FRACTURED forehead has Western Bulldogs defender Zaine Cordy in doubt to return this season, but the damage isn't as bad as it could be.
Cordy, 21, was injured in the second quarter and went off the field under the blood rule after being on the end of an errant left boot from North Melbourne big man Ben Brown in the immediate aftermath of a marking contest.
"He's got a little fracture in his forehead," Dogs coach Luke Beveridge said.
"It's just a bit of bad luck. I think the big fella Brown came down on him after a marking contest. We think he's OK."
DOGS BITE ROOS Full match coverage and stats
Beveridge believed it could have been worse.
"Obviously if it was too depressed, it'd be seriously concerning," Beveridge said.
"Hopefully he's OK and he hasn't got much of a dint in his head and he doesn't bleed much and he's all right. It seems like he's pretty stable and it's not as bad as it could be, even though it's not flash."
The backman is unlikely to be fit to face Carlton next Sunday at Etihad Stadium.
"You can (play) with a (fractured) cheekbone, but I suppose with the brain being right behind your forehead, I'd hazard a guess he mightn't be available next week," Beveridge said.
GAME BREAKER Bont sparks the fightback
The Dogs trailed at the main break by 28 points but stormed back into the contest, with Marcus Bontempelli producing a stellar performance to finish with 35 disposals, 670m gained, seven inside-50s and two goals.
They produced a similar fightback against St Kilda last week, having trailed by 28 early in the second quarter of that clash before putting in a brilliant third term to run away 45-point winners.
Similarly they were left one short on the bench in that match when defender Roarke Smith was concussed in the opening quarter.
"Our history has been that we haven't been that great when we've lost a player early in the game. We haven't been able to win a lot of those games. To do it two weeks in a row when we lost Roarke last week, that's encouraging," Beveridge said.
The victory over North, a finals hopeful, helped build character, the coach said.
"Even in the games where some of the teams up the higher end of the ladder have got the better of us, we've kind of been in it for a half and hanging in there," Beveridge said.
"To their credit, the boys, with what's going on around them, they're persevering and they're trying to do their best individually, and all that's adding up to a spirited team performance.
"It does put some money in the bank for the future. We haven't played together a lot. It's a very different mix.
"It's quite exciting to see that unfold and hopefully, as long as we maintain that, and looking ahead, we can really leverage off it, we can work it into a really positive for us."