A Canberra man punched in the jaw while out in Civic one night felt he could have "easily been killed", a court heard this week.
When police arrived to the scene early on October 4, 2015, they found the man's jaw "badly deformed" and a large amount of blood on the ground.
The man had been knocked unconscious and his jaw broken in two places by the assault.
Later in hospital, he had plates and screws inserted into his jaw.
Doctors wired his jaw shut for six weeks, during which time the man was forced to eat only pureed food and lost seven kilograms, the court heard.
In a victim impact statement tendered to court, the man said he felt embarrassed and humiliated out in public.
He refused to go out sometimes just because he was embarrassed by his appearance.
He said his university results suffered, and he missed out on pursuing his dream of getting a full time position in a first grade football team.
"Every time I take a knock to the jaw, regardless how slight the impact," he wrote, "I still react and worry that some form of damage may have occurred to the plates and screws."
His father, who also wrote to the court, said he was continuously concerned the phone will ring at 3am in the morning with more news of injury to their children.
He said in the weeks after the assault the "usual sparkle in [his son's] eyes was replaced with a look of confusion and fear that I had never seen before nor want to see again."
The assailant, Hayden Ashley Ryan Todkill, 21, handed himself into police after they released surveillance footage of the incident.
He pleaded guilty earlier this year to one count of causing grievous bodily harm.
An agreed statement of facts tendered to court says the victim and a friend left Academy nightclub early the morning of the assault.
As he and his friend were passing through a group of men, "some words were exchanged".
At some point there was laughter, and a "heated exchange" between the victim and Todkill's cousin.
The cousin pushed the victim.
The victim regained his balance and stepped toward the cousin.
Todkill, then 18, punched the victim on the right side of his face.
Another, unknown man, punched the victim on his left side.
Todkill continued his attack and punched the victim twice more.
At some point, the victim lost consciousness and fell to the ground, hitting his head, the documents say.
Todkill and his friends fled.
On Wednesday, Todkill appeared in the ACT Supreme Court to be sentenced for his crime.
His defence barrister asked the court to consider a suspended sentence or an intensive corrections order.
But prosecutors said only a term of full time imprisonment would be adequate for the offence.
Justice John Burns adjourned the sentence while Todkill was assessed for an intensive corrections order.
He remains on bail.
The case returns on February 28.