After missing lengthy periods with injury, it’s difficult to say whether or not Tyler Benson’s development has been stunted in any real way. Though he had missed significant time with injury in both his draft year and draft+1 seasons, Benson seemed to get himself back on track with the Vancouver Giants in 2017-18, playing in 58 of the team’s 72 games. Despite missing 14 games (12 to start the year), Benson finished second in team scoring for the Giants, registering 27 goals and 42 assists for 69 points. From there, Benson finished his year by making his professional debut with the Bakersfield Condors and playing in five games where he tallied three assists. It will certainly be interesting to follow Benson as he entires his first full professional season.
Born: March 15th, 1998 — City: Edmonton, Alberta
Height: 6 feet 0 inches — Weight: 190 lbs [183 cm/86 kg]
NEWS AND SCOUTING REPORTS
Jason Gregor recently looked at Tyler Benson in his Top 10 Oilers Prospect countdown:
He needs to stay healthy. In four WHL seasons, he only played 183 games. Last season, he sat out the first 12 games recovering from two hernia surgeries in April and July. Once he returned, he was finally able to stay healthy and hopefully the injuries are in the past. When healthy, he has an excellent all-around game. Of all the young players I’d argue he is the most consistent. He isn’t flashy, but he does everything well. He needs to get a bit quicker, and if his hip issues are behind him he will gain a half step. He’s very strong, highly competitive and is reliable in both ends.
In January of this year, Tyler Yaremchuk had the chance to chat with Benson about being drafted by his hometown team, his injury issues, and playing in the AHL:
“I grew up an Oilers fan, wearing their jersey and cheering them on, and so did my family, so being able to put it on for the first time like that was a special moment.”
On his future…
“From what I’ve heard the AHL is a very tough league. Obviously, I want to play in the NHL, but if they (the Oilers) think the right path for me is to start in the AHL, I’ll gladly do it”.
A once highly sought after prospect, Benson has struggled to stay healthy throughout his WHL career. He was expected to be first round pick in 2016 but fell to the second round after playing just 30 games for the Giants that year. When in the lineup, Benson’s offensive ability, leadership and complete game made him a real threat for the Giants. In 58 games last season, the most games that he has played since the 2014-2015 campaign; Benson recorded a respectable 27 goals and 69 points. Due to his slowed down development from injuries and his lack of a dynamic facet that defines his game, it’s hard to predict how well the young winger will do in his first pro campaign. The potential is still there but expectations must be kept in check at this point.
Although not a game-breaker when it comes to speed, he has above-average acceleration and ability to create separation .. This comes from a powerful lower body that produces a strong and stable stride. His power aids in fending off checkers .. Continues to push the pace especially when carrying the puck; often has good solo efforts in transition .. Uses his body well to guard and hold off defenders and keep them on his back and away from the puck .. This flows from strong, precise edge work where more lower body strength is obvious .. Stops and starts make him slippery and tough to defend, especially off the wall, powers through his edges to drive his way to the net and create scoring chances.
A nifty player to watch handling the puck, however won’t wow you with spectacular 1-on-1 dangles .. Uses small areas effectively to develop space in order to make individual plays .. Lines up regularly as a left winger, and works better as a distributor of the puck, utilizing high-end accuracy on both his forehand and backhand passes .. Exhibits soft hands and heads-up play while adopting a quick-strike mentality .. Often uses a high stick grip, which creates a whipping wrist shot that comes off quick and appears hard to read.
Future Considerations: 29th
ISS Hockey: 55th
Central Scouting service: 24th (North American skaters)
Hockey Prospect: 30th
The Draft Analyst: 29th
VIDEO AND HIGHLIGHTS
Edmonton Future Watch put together another wonderful video with highlights from Benson’s 2017-18 season:
The WHL also put together a highlight pack for Benson following the season.
TSN’s pre-draft profile on Benson leading into the 2016 NHL Entry Draft.
Tyler Benson vs Lane Zablocki from back in January:
|2010-11||SSAC Bantam AA 2 (APEX Geosci.)||ERBHL||12||13||8||21||0|
|2011-12||SSAC Lions Bantam AAA||AMBHL||33||34||50||84||44||11||12||19||31||4|
|2012-13||SSAC Lions Bantam AAA “C”||AMBHL||33||57||89||146||52||11||15||22||37||16|
|SSAC Bulldogs Minor Midget AAA||AMMHL||1||1||1||2||0|
|2013-14||Pursuit of Excellence Prep||CSSHL||15||15||20||35||40||3||2||2||4||6|
|Pursuit of Excellence 18U||NAPHL 18U||21||14||26||40||48||4||3||4||7||28|
|Canada Pacific U17||WHC-17||6||1||0||1||2|
|Canada Black U17 “A”||WHC-17||5||1||1||2||4|
|2015-16||Vancouver Giants “C”||WHL||30||9||19||28||46||0|
|2016-17||Vancouver Giants “C”||WHL||33||11||31||42||31||-3|
|2017-18||Vancouver Giants “C”||WHL||58||27||42||69||39||-1||7||3||8||11||10|
|2011-12||SSAC Lions Bantam AAA||John Reid Bantam||5||10||11||21||4|
|2012-13||SSAC Lions Bantam AAA “C”||John Reid Bantam||6||8||11||19||4|
|Team Edmonton South||Alberta Cup||5||5||8||13||4|
|2013-14||Team Alberta “A”||WCCC-16||4||2||1||3||0|
|Canada U18 “A”||Hlinka Gretzky Cup||4||1||4||5||0||4|
|2016-17||WHL All-Stars||Jr Super Series||2||1||2||3||0||2|
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