Cincinnati’s Torrey DiRoberto

By Rich Herles

This week we take a look at Cincinnati’s speedy rookie center, Torrey DiRoberto.

He has spent the last four years playing junior hockey for Seattle in the WHL. Last year Torrey was fourth on the Seattle team in scoring with 25 goals and 42 assists for 67 points to go with 100 penalty minutes. DiRoberto was drafted Buffalo’s 6th choice (128th overall) in the 1998 Entry Draft. On July 1,1999, he was signed as a free agent by the Anaheim Mighty Ducks.

In Torrey’s first season in the AHL he is already making an impact with the Mighty Ducks. So far this year he is leading the rookies on his team in scoring with 9 goals and 9 assists for a total of 18 points.

When asked to assess Torrey so far this year, head coach, Moe Mantha said, “Torrey’s got some great speed. At this level he can drive a lot of defenseman crazy just because of the speed that he has. It’s a matter for us to teach him how to use it to his advantage. But overall, he’s starting to understand about playing his position a lot better, starting to compete better on the one on ones.”

“It’s a tough adjustment for a kid to come in here and learn to become a pro hockey player. He’s doing it. He’s like a sponge and he wants to learn. So, he’s going to have a bright future ahead of him. The fact that he wants to learn and work hard at his game.”

On Torrey’s speed Coach Mantha said “His speed is a big time asset, at this level he can drive a lot of defenseman (crazy), who are working on their agility and their lateral movement. As soon as he learns to use it to his advantage, to go from first gear to third gear, he’ll have success at this level.”

“Jay Legault and (Torrey) have been feeding off each other and are both young players. And they’re both
learning together to support each other. I think that they learn to chip and support and as I say Jay knows how to put the puck in the hole and let Torrey skate into the puck.”

When asked if he changed anything before the hot streak that he’s on Torrey replied, “No, not really. The coaches have shown a lot of confidence with me. I think that’s the main thing for a young guy in this league. He’s (Coach Mantha) put me out there in key situations. So I kind of scored off that, I guess.”

The biggest adjustment has been ” the speed and strength here. It’s the best of the best here and the NHL would be the best of the best of the best.”

As for goals for this year ” just to work hard on my defense and to learn the pro game.”

“A lot of the older guys and the coaches -when you make a mistake, and I’ve made my share- don’t get me wrong, instead of jumping all over your back they help by telling me what to do and what’s right to do. It’s learning form the older guys.”

Watching Torrey on the ice, you can immediately see why the Ducks’ coaches and players already consider the young center a big asset to their team. His attitude toward the game and his determination to learn all that he can, will definitely have Torrey DiRoberto up in the NHL soon as one of the best of the best of the best!!!

Bio: Torrey DiRoberto
Shoots: Left
Height: 5' 11" Weight: 190
Born: April 17,1978 N.Y.,N.Y.
Acquired: Assigned to Cincinnati by the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim
Draft: Buffalo's 6th choice, 128th overall, of the1997 Entry Draft

Rich Herles covers AHL Rookie Prospects for Hockey’s Future web site and Just Hockey magazine & web site
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