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Guest mindfly

Wings let go of Torquato, Cameron

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The Detroit Red Wings have taken a pass on Zack Torquato and Randy Cameron, allowing both prospects to re-enter the NHL draft.

Torquato and Cameron, forwards drafted in 2007, had to be signed by June 1.

The 6-foot, 195-pound Torquato was selected 178th overall but didn’t live up to expectations with the Ontario Hockey League’s Erie Otters after being drafted. In two seasons, he wasn’t able to exceed his draft-year point total of 69. The Red Wings had him pegged for a 100-point man in the OHL.

The 5-foot-11, 187-pound Cameron was selected 148th overall but struggled to emerge as a top-line player with the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League’s Moncton Wildcats. Although he played a strong two-way game on one of the top teams in the country, his 51-point career year simply didn’t cut it.

The writing was on the wall for both when the Red Wings looked elsewhere for youth, signing free agent prospects Brian Lashoff, Brent Raedeke, Francis Pare, Sebastien Piche and Jordan Pearce in the past 10 months.

Swedish forward Joakim Andersson did not need to be signed. Because of the lack of an NHL-International Ice Hockey Federation transfer agreement, the Red Wings retain the right to sign him indefinitely.

The other picks from the 2007 year, defensemen Brendan Smith and Bryan Rufenach, are in college and don’t need to be signed until 2011.

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Know very little of Cameron, but to be honest I'm a little disappointed we let go of Torquato. I've been a fan since day 1 but in saying that in the two or three seasons since he's been drafted by the Wings he's been disappointing in the OHL. He hasn't lived up to expectations, and even though he's been on a bad side he needed to do a bit more. Last season the Erie Otters had a reasonably successful season and he still failed to produce the goods.

I suspect he'll find himself with another NHL contract at some point though, especially if he has a good season in 09/10. Not sure if he'll ever be good enough to make it though.

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Did we give up on Torquato too soon? Probably not, but he's been in red hot form for the Otters for the past 2 months. Back to back 4 point games, 13 points from the past 4 and he's well on track to make this the most productive season of his OHL career. Yes he should given he's playing against guys younger than him but he is highly skilled and I'm interested to know whether he improved his skating enough to possibly be NHL material.

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Looks like Zack is having his big year a year to late regards the Wings keeping him.

Edited by Andy Pred 48

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