The much-anticipated and rumoured trade has been in the works for some time, but was just recently approved by the teams and the league office, said the Sudbury Wolves in a news release.
The trade was partly necessitated by the Wolves having an abundance of overage candidates returning this season including Brody Silk, Nathan Pancel, Jeff Corbett and Ray Heuther. The Wolves can only play three overage players in a game.
Campagna, who finished in third place in team scoring last season behind Nick Baptiste and Pancel, has played for the Wolves for the past four seasons.
“I feel it is time for me to go in a new direction,” said Campagna. “I struggled offensively in the second-half last season and, given the tragic loss of my billet (Fabio Belli), I really believe it would be difficult for me to play hockey in Sudbury again without Fabio by my side.
“I want to thank Wolves’ management for giving me this new opportunity, and I want to thank Mark Burgess and the Burgess family who have been fantastic to me and very supportive of me and my family during my four years in Sudbury. I now look forward to a new start in Plymouth.”
“Mathew is a very skilled player and a fine young man and we are going to miss him here in Sudbury,” said Wolves’ GM Blaine Smith. “I feel we owed it to Mathew to give him a fresh start with a new team after all he has been through and provide him with renewed hope of earning a free agent contract with an NHL team. This trade also gives other veteran centremen like veterans Jacob Harris and Danny Desrochers, an opportunity to move up in our lineup in their final season of OHL hockey.”
Smith said Campagna was one of the most attractive overage players the Wolves had and provided the Wolves with the best chance of recouping some missing early draft selections, which are pivotal to drafting top-end players or acquiring top-end players in the future.
“Plymouth gave us the best offer for Mathew, and it was important to our organization and our scouting staff to recoup some top draft selections in order to draft high-end players in the future,” said Smith.
The Wolves have just completed three consecutive winning regular seasons where the team finished with more than 70 points each year, but the Wolves have only won one play-off round in the past three seasons.
“Winning in the play offs is paramount, and we feel that we are fortunate to have four excellent overage players coming to tryout camp to lead our club,” said Smith. “Brody Silk (6-1, 210 lbs), Ray Heuther (6-2, 205 lbs), Jeff Corbett (6-2, 200 lbs) and 45-goal scorer Nathan Pancel (5-11, 190 lbs) will provide our team with much-needed size, experience and skill heading into the new season.”
With the newly acquired draft selections, the Wolves now have 32 draft selections in the first eight rounds of the next three OHL drafts.