Guelph Storm forward Brock McGinn comes across his toughness the old-fashioned way -- he earned it.
You have to be tough when you're the youngest of three hockey-playing brothers.
McGinn's oldest brother, Jamie, 23, just finished his fourth NHL season. Middle brother Tye, 21, was a 2010 fourth-round pick of the Philadelphia Flyers who spent his first professional season in 2011-12 with the team's American Hockey League affiliate, the Adirondack Phantoms.
Hold your bets
Guelph Storm forward Brock McGinn will join older brothers Jamie and Tye to have his name called at an NHL draft when the teams convene in Pittsburgh for the 2012 NHL Draft.
Jamie was a 2006 second-round pick (No. 36) of the San Jose Sharks, while Tye was a 2010 sixth-round pick of the Philadelphia Flyers. Brock is No. 49 in NHL Central Scouting's final ranking of North American skaters for this year's draft, meaning there's an outside shot he could hear his name called earlier than both his brothers.
But he's not betting on it.
Brock told NHL.com he made his big bet on the Ontario Hockey League draft.
"In the OHL there was, with Jamie," Brock told NHL.com. "He had a little bet with me -- he'd give me 500 bucks if I beat him, and if I lost I had to give him 50 bucks."
Jamie was taken by the Ottawa 67s with the 50th pick of the 2004 draft, but Brock beat him by four spots, going 46th to Guelph in the 2010 draft.
"Fortunately I beat him there," Brock said. "So he paid up. That was a good one."
After a rough season with a hand injury that limited him to just 33 games in 2011-12, Brock said there would be no bets on the 2012 NHL Draft.
Only pride will be on the line.
-- Adam Kimelman
And then there's Brock, at 18, the youngest, and at 5-foot-11 and 174 pounds, the smallest of the bunch.
"It was always a great time just going out there, us three, working on our stuff, the banks on the side so we could hit each other into," Brock told NHL.com. "That was always fun. Definitely a great time growing up with them."
Mom Cori was the yearly maker of the backyard rink at the family home in Fergus, Ont., and remembers some hellacious battles.
"Oh yes, there were a few times they went head-first into the snow bank," she told NHL.com. "They were very competitive. Brock took a lot of abuse from Jamie and Tye, but he held his own. He didn't back down at all."
That mean streak has served him well, including in an injury-plagued season with the Storm in 2011-12. He was limited to just 33 games due to an injured left hand that required surgery twice. He said he broke the scaphoid bone his left hand in October, but the fracture wasn't discovered until an MRI in December. He had surgery just before Christmas and missed nearly three months. He returned in February and played through the Storm's first-round OHL playoff loss, but never felt 100 percent. He had surgery again right after the Scouting Combine in May, with a bone from his hip being used to help in the healing process, which he said should take 2-4 months.
Despite the injury, Guelph assistant coach Chris Hajt told NHL.com McGinn was able to showcase the strengths of his game.
"He fought through some injuries and was a warrior," he said. "He'll do anything for the team to win. For him to go through what he went through and play as well as he did, it's a feather in his cap."
Despite the injury, McGinn raised his game in the eyes of NHL Central Scouting, which bumped him from No. 135 in its mid-term ranking of North American skaters for the 2012 NHL Draft to No. 49 in the final rankings.
"I'm a fast power forward who is very aggressive but can also produce points, and is someone who goes out there and creates energy and some space for my linemates for them to get the puck," Brock told NHL.com. "I try to get it to them and put in goals."
McGinn said growing up with two older brothers, they were the models for the kind of player he's become.
"I see a little bit of both of them in me," Brock said. "Tye is really skilled and you can see his skill in me. Jamie is a good skater, big, strong, very aggressive, and I see that in me. I see a little bit of both of them in me."
Beyond the on-ice features, McGinn has watched his brothers rise through the hockey ranks -- junior hockey, the NHL draft, the AHL -- and learned a few other things.
"They definitely helped me out a lot," he said. "Each step you go up to you have to work that much harder. That's something they really pushed on me. They really helped me out by giving me those extra tips."
Those tips come far more frequently now that the boys are grown up.
"They are very close, all three of them," Cori McGinn said. "It's so nice to see. Jamie is always there for Brock the same as Tye. They'll go to him to ask them questions. I'll throw something out that I remember that went on with Jamie, but [Brock] hears it but I don't know if it 100-percent sinks in. He listens more to Jamie and Tye because he knows they went through it. They are very close and I'm very happy.
"Growing up they fought, they were always at each other. You'd drive in the car and they'd be at one another. … They get along great now. Jamie has a cottage five minutes from the house that he lives at, and Brock and Tye are always out there with him.
"As a parent it makes you feel good."
So will having a third son drafted into the NHL. It's something Cori McGinn never believed was possible on those cold nights building the backyard rink.
"Not in a minute," she said. "I always believe if you want to do something you have to work hard it. And being in the backyard was a way to get your skating better, and it's so you didn't have to pack them up and take them to the arena. We would just watch them. But never did I think they would actually make it in the NHL."
Contact Adam Kimelman at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter: @NHLAdamK