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Red Wings take defenceman Smith with 27th pick in NHL draft @NHL

DETROIT (AP) - The Detroit Red Wings selected defenceman Brendan Smith with the 27th overall pick in the 2007 NHL Entry Draft on Friday.

Wings assistant general manager Jim Nill said the six-foot-two, 185-pound Smith is a good skater who handles the puck well and has plenty of upside.

"He joins the rush well," Nill said. "He has the skills to be a good NHL defenceman."

Nill said the Wings have watched Smith play for St. Michael's of the Ontario Provincial Tier II league the past two years. He said Smith will play at the University of Wisconsin, then likely play at least one year in the minors.

Nill said Smith was the last of four players on Detroit's shopping list. He said if Smith had been taken, the Wings likely would have made a trade.

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