HARVEST

We haven’t heard much since January about Tyler Benson and his injury issues, and that’s a tell. If the young Vancouver Giants winger was feeling grand, I’m fairly sure his name would have popped up in an article published at the team website today (as an aside, good information in there, worth the read).

Benson had a very good season going for the Giants until injury sidelined him for the second season in a row. If he had been able to complete his season, I am absolutely certain Benson would have been part of that article today.

You may feel Benson’s performance fades compares to other players chosen around him, but that’s really not the case. Adam Mascherin and Alex DeBrincat had tremendous seasons, but the Oilers drafted a player they were comfortable with (range of skills) and the actual numbers compare well with most players chosen in the range.

2016 DRAFT 31-39 FORWARDS (2016-17 SEASON)

  • The Oilers didn’t have a chance at Yegor Korshkov, who had a fine season in a pro league (KHL). He spiked as a player beginning at the WJs in 2015 and has been quality since. An excellent pick.
  • Edmonton had (I’m just talking forwards here) several excellent players to choose from but went with Benson. I recall some articles about Benson having skated and looking recovered from draft year injuries. Benson’s scouting report (two-way forward, aggressive,skilled) suggested a range of abilities. Corey Pronman had him No. 18 overall and mentioned him as a “quality defensive forward” something that would appeal to the Oilers.
  • Rasmus Asplund was also available, he got a lot of attention due to skill and skating abilities. I had him at No. 27, he was good value at No. 33.
  • Jordan Kyrou was well thought of draft day but his resume mentioned consistency and slight frame (6.0, 175) on draft day may have cost him but Kyrou went inside the range of expectation.
  • Pascal Laberge was high on my list (inside top 20) but there were concerns about him as a somewhat one-dimensional type. His draft+1 season was the weakest in this group but we are early days.
  • Adam Mascherin was one of the best scorers in the 2016 draft and fell because of his size (5.10) and skating (not slow but not a burner). Mascherin cranked out another great season in his draft+1 year.
  • Alex DeBrincat was an outstanding offensive prospect in his draft year (I had him No. 15 overall, Pronman had him in the same range). He duplicated his marvelous 16-year old season in his draft year, and this time without Connor McDavid. In his draft +1 year DeBrincat was outstanding again and as you can see his NHLE suggests he is the class of the group.

Why didn’t the Oilers take DeBrincat? Pretty easy answer, they liked Benson and his range of skills more. The tale of the tape on Benson (6.01, 200) versus DeBrincat (5.07, 163) on their draft days may have contributed and the Oilers may feel DeBrincat is going to find tough sledding at the NHL level (as opposed to junior). That’s a lot of offense being posted by the young man, but there are elements to Benson’s game that probably made a difference for the Oilers. Time will tell, fairly easy to see who is leading the race at this time.

The unfortunate thing for the Oilers is that their man has a story to tell—or he does if he is healthy enough to play hockey. One of the last things we read about him goes all the way back to January:

  • Tyler Benson on his injury:  “It’s frustrating. I’m just worried about trying to get back to healthy and back on the ice with my team.” Source

I’ve been waiting for an update on Benson and his situation, and today we may have gotten one from the organization. An article on the team website focused on the state of the prospect pool didn’t include an update on him. Unless the “Prospect Pool Volume 2” article coming up includes a medical update, and that may be the case, we may have gotten a big clue today about the state of Tyler Benson’s hockey future.

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54 Responses to "HARVEST"

  1. dustrock says:

    Thought it was a risky pick at the time for an organization who doesn’t have a deep prospect cupboard.

    Really liked Debrincat and Mascherin. Don’t like groin/hernia injuries in young players, that can’t possibly bode well for the future. Ah well.

    http://ohlprospects.blogspot.ca/2017/06/final-mediascout-poll-for-2017-nhl-draft.html

    Final scouts poll for OHL eligibles:

    1. Villardi
    2. Tippett
    3. Suzuki
    4. Thomas
    5. Hague
    6. Robertson
    7. Ratcliffe
    8. Timmins

  2. geowal says:

    From the Oiler post:
    “Stay tuned for Part 2, which will come out on June 14”

    Don’t give up hope yet Lt! There’s still some notables like Bear, Paigan, Platzer (qualifies since Greg Chase did) who weren’t mentioned so stands to reason Benson might be too.

  3. Centre of attention says:

    Not claiming to be a WHL insider but it’s pretty well known that Vancouver shopped him last deadline, and will definitely seek a trade for Benson sometime this off season or early next year.

    Being on the trade block as well as having injury difficulty probably explains his absence from the article you quoted.

  4. hunter1909 says:

    Benson? Is this a typo and you meant Benning?

    Benning is an outstanding young Oiler player/prospect who has yet to truly prove himself past that rookie sensation flying under everyone’s radar – just-wait- until-they-figure-out-his style etc.

    The true beauty of the past season is this: Oilers no longer have to worry too hard about their rookies and prospects. Winning franchises seldom do.

    Rookies and prospects are reserved for Vancouver Canuck type teams in 2017. Oilers meanwhile discuss Chara joining the team with a grin from ear to ear.

    Just saying.

  5. Ribs says:

    Matheson had this in March…

    Oilers 2016 second-round draft pick Tyler Benson hasn’t played in two and-a-half months because of a sports hernia problem and after seeing the Oiler medical staff, he’s deciding soon whether to have surgery to fix things. A local product, Benson, who plays left-wing for the WHL’s Vancouver Giants, has had a run of bad fortune — last year a cyst on his spine, and pubitis —which limited him to 30 WHL games in his draft year. Benson, who turned 19 on March 15, has played 33 games this season with 42 points.

    http://edmontonjournal.com/sports/hockey/oilers-snapshots-letestu-set-career-high-benson-may-need-surgery

    Did he opt to fix it? Maybe we find out tomorrow?

  6. Professor Q says:

    Centre of attention:
    Not claiming to be a WHL insider but it’s pretty well known that Vancouver shopped him last deadline, and will definitely seek a trade for Benson sometime this off season or early next year.

    Being on the trade block as well as having injury difficulty probably explains his absence from the article you quoted.

    The opposite, actually. People inquired and *thought* he was on the block like others in his situation but his was a bit different. They traded the older players and wanted to keep Benson to Captain the youthful squad they traded for for the next few years.

    As they believe the youthful squad has a chance to do well.

  7. Acumen says:

    I think the important takeaway from the Benson saga is the fact that the organization shut him down mid season when his junior team didn’t look like they wanted to. It shows a more professionally run franchise that values the long game more than drumming up interest on press releases like this one (the ‘Oil Change’ philosophy, if you will). That being said, this is only half the prospects of note in the system and I’m sure another article will be out shortly with Benson’s story being covered.

    Still, Benson did show statistical improvement across the board prior to being hurt. I’m not overly concerned with the draft pick just yet. It was a risky bet with the injury but the kid clearly has talent in a lot of areas. I would have preferred DeBrincat both then and now, but honest recollection shows that the frustrating thing for me on draft day was not jumping at dealing that pick for Anthony DeAngelo before Phoenix did.

    And I’m late to the game from this morning’s post, but I have a totally unfounded suspicion that Chiarelli is pushing for Kovalchuk this summer. He’s a heavy, established volume shooter and fits the profile of past due vets that he always liked to get during his Boston days–his Ancients, as you called them.

    I’m guessing that he’s the return on Eberle. Sort of fits what Stauff said we should expect in the return (a player in a similar roster position who hasn’t shown as well as they can over the last couple years).

  8. Ducey says:

    Not sure there is a tell because he likely is in part 2 tomorrow. The only tell was that he was injured and there is not a lot to talk about. We likely won’t find out much as teams tend not to disclose much about their prospects’ health when they are playing outside the org.

    I imagine we will hear they expect him to be ready for camp – whether that’s the case or not.

  9. Ribs says:

    Kind of funny listening to Bill Wilms give a Benson update on the Pipeline show March 14th…

    https://soundcloud.com/pipeline-show/bill-wilms-mar14

    Still pretty unclear as to what is actually happening.

  10. Ducey says:

    I actually think the comments on Lagesson are more interesting. Sounds like he has issues with mobility and motivation. Never want to hear a player is having problems with those.

  11. Centre of attention says:

    Professor Q: The opposite, actually. People inquired and *thought* he was on the block like others in his situation but his was a bit different. They traded the older players and wanted to keep Benson to Captain the youthful squad they traded for for the next few years.

    As they believe the youthful squad has a chance to do well.

    Not how I heard it and I’m surprised they would want to keep him.

    He’s not that young anymore and I think its in the teams as well as Bensons best interest to get him traded. Bob has talked about him possibly moving teams since the injury first re-surfaced, FWIW.

    The Giants are an addled organization, best get him out of there.

  12. Centre of attention says:

    Jim Matheson‏ @NHLbyMatty 29s30 seconds ago
    More
    Oilers’ 2017 2nd-rounder Tyler Benson did have sports hernia surgery this spring but will be ready for prospects camp after NHL draft

    An on-topic tweet, what do ya know 🙂

    Hopefully surgery clears things up.

  13. Lowetide says:

    Centre of attention:
    Jim Matheson‏ @NHLbyMatty29s30 seconds ago
    MoreOilers’ 2017 2nd-rounder Tyler Benson did have sports hernia surgery this spring but will be ready for prospects camp after NHL draft

    An on-topic tweet, what do ya know 🙂

    Hopefully surgery clears things up.

    Huzzah! And we have an answer! Joy!

  14. Centre of attention says:

    Lowetide: Huzzah! And we have an answer! Joy!

    IDK if sports hernia surgery at age 19 is much reason for celebration, but alas at least it is something.

    By the way, I wanted to bounce something off you:

    Does this D-core get you to the cup finals next year?

    Klefbom-Larsson
    Russel-Petrovic
    Nurse-Benning
    Gryba

    I don’t think so. And you can shoehorn a not fully 100% Sekera somewhere in there around January.

    I guess when Sekera comes back you sit Benning? No, that doesn’t make sense IMO. Sit Petrovic? But you just traded for him. Not a good look to sit a new guy, especially if you’re planning on trying to attract stud D-men in free agency later on. We all know there is exactly 0% chance Nurse sits “because Oilers”.

    Is it just me or are we missing something here?

    Is an existing roster D moving out to make an acquisition that is significant enough to solidify the top 4 for the foreseeable future?

    Klefbom-Larsson
    New Guy-Benning
    Russel-Gryba

    Catch my drift?

    Nah. They’d never trade him. Would they?

  15. jtblack says:

    Benson doesnt need a good or bad season next year; he just needs a season. Still WHL Eligble for 3 more yrs, so the Oilers can be patient with him.

    Given his injury battles, if he becomes a player it would be a huge Bonus.

  16. Lowetide says:

    Centre: Fussy britches had something on Nurse being dealt the other day. It makes sense in that he doesn’t need to be protected, giving his value a boost. It would be a surprise based on how high the club holds him (or my perception of it) but it’s certainly possible.

  17. Ducey says:

    jtblack:
    Benson doesnt need a good or bad season next year; he just needs a season.Still WHL Eligble for 3 more yrs, so the Oilers canbe patient with him.

    Given his injury battles, if he becomes a player it would be a hugeBonus.

    How is he WHL eligible for 3 more yrs?

  18. Ducey says:

    Lowetide:
    Centre: Fussy britches had something on Nurse being dealt the other day. It makes sense in that he doesn’t need to be protected, giving his value a boost. It would be a surprise based on how high the club holds him (or my perception of it) but it’s certainly possible.

    Fussy has been living in the garage since Chia showed up, hasn’t she/he? Has she had anything right since then?

  19. Ray says:

    Centre of attention: IDK if sports hernia surgery at age 19 is much reason for celebration, but alas at least it is something.

    By the way, I wanted to bounce something off you:

    Does this D-core get you to the cup finals next year?

    Klefbom-Larsson
    Russel-Petrovic
    Nurse-Benning
    Gryba

    I don’t think so. And you can shoehorn a not fully 100% Sekera somewhere in there around January.

    I guess when Sekera comes back you sit Benning? No, that doesn’t make sense IMO. Sit Petrovic? But you just traded for him. Not a good look to sit a new guy, especially if you’re planning on trying to attract stud D-men in free agency later on. We all know there is exactly 0% chance Nurse sits “because Oilers”.

    Is it just me or are we missing something here?

    Is an existing roster D moving out to make an acquisition that is significant enough to solidify the top 4 for the foreseeable future?

    Klefbom-Larsson
    New Guy-Benning
    Russel-Gryba

    Catch my drift?

    Nah. They’d never trade him. Would they?

    Nurse, Eberle, and our first for Doughty on the draft floor. Niether team will mess with the expanssion rosters as they dont need to

  20. jonrmcleod says:

    Jim Matheson
    @NHLbyMatty
    Unless there’s another NHL club free-agent RW Spencer Foo’s eying, he’s almost surely going to sign with the hometown Oilers or Philly

    Foo real?

  21. jtblack says:

    Ducey,

    I was thinking 2 + overage. But I think you are correct, he has 2 more years left

  22. Centre of attention says:

    Ray: Nurse, Eberle, and our first for Doughty on the draft floor. Niether team will mess with the expanssion rosters as they dont need to

    I’m pickin’ up what you’re layin’ down. I can dig.

  23. geowal says:

    Centre of attention:
    Jim Matheson‏ @NHLbyMatty29s30 seconds ago
    MoreOilers’ 2017 2nd-rounder Tyler Benson did have sports hernia surgery this spring but will be ready for prospects camp after NHL draft

    An on-topic tweet, what do ya know

    Hopefully surgery clears things up.

    He must be a fan of this page…or he got a preview of tomorrow’s article.

  24. Centre of attention says:

    Ducey: Fussy has been living in the garage since Chia showed up, hasn’t she/he? Has she had anything right since then?

    She says interesting things at times. That’s definitely for sure.

    Wouldn’t be shocked if its one of Katz’s kids twitter account. Maybe hears the suits talking about something every now and then while around the organization and then fills in the blanks. Would also explain the pin-up profile pic and the Garfield references. Classic teenagerisms.

  25. Centre of attention says:

    Congrats to Nelson on his Calder Cup.

  26. bobinyvr says:

    So Lowetide, it seems you may have overestimated Pascal Laberge in the draft.

    Hmmm, perhaps we should start calling you the Magnanimous Bastard.

    Just kidding, am truly amazed at the countless hours you commit to the draft and your blog.

    You are sir, a true fan and always a true gentleman.

    Many thanks for keeping us informed and entertained this offseason.

  27. jfry says:

    we used to talk about peter sarno a lot (well, sometimes) around here. i imagine a lot of other blogs/forums have their version of him.

    i imagine that debrincat is washed with that brush. and i imagine that benson is washed with the brush that says, “worse case scenario, he’s Moreau”.

    All that said, i think i’d rather cheat on the proven offensive player than the larger injured player.

    http://www.eliteprospects.com/player.php?player=10826 <– sarno!

  28. Lowetide says:

    bobinyvr:
    So Lowetide, it seems you may have overestimated Pascal Laberge in the draft.

    Hmmm, perhaps we should start calling you the Magnanimous Bastard.

    Just kidding, am truly amazed at the countless hours you commit to the draft and your blog.

    You are sir, a true fan and always a true gentleman.

    Many thanks for keeping us informed and entertained this offseason.

    Haha! Long way to go, but I did like Benson’s year before the injury. More important for the Oilers to get it right than this blog’s author. 🙂

  29. SoxandOil says:

    At a Flames STH event today Treliving announced they are going 7-3-1 for expansion and that going forward they will draft a goalie in the first 2 rounds every 2 years. Doesn’t pertain to this thread but still interesting to see other teams strategy.

  30. Lowetide says:

    SoxandOil:
    At a Flames STH event today Treliving announced they are going 7-3-1 for expansion and that going forward they will draft a goalie in the first 2 rounds every 2 years. Doesn’t pertain to this thread but still interesting to see other teams strategy.

    Interesting on the goalies. I don’t think it’s very smart, but it is interesting.

  31. jonrmcleod says:

    According to Spector, the Flames, Canucks, or Leafs could outbid the Oilers on Russell.

  32. SoxandOil says:

    Lowetide,

    Agreed, I think it’s very forced. Also said they won’t be trading their first.

  33. Lowetide says:

    jonrmcleod:
    According to Spector, the Flames, Canucks, or Leafs could outbid the Oilers on Russell.

    Hopefully PC doesn’t get involved in a bidding war. He can’t afford to overspend on Russell.

  34. N64 says:

    Acumen: I think the important takeaway from the Benson saga is the fact that the organization shut him down mid season when his junior team didn’t look like they wanted to

    Yes. Could be coincidence but Giants shut him down just before a game in Edmonton. Sports hernia is a pretty broad brush. Given the history before and after draft he needed the best possible medical follow up. Hope it works.

  35. jtblack says:

    Lowetide,

    I was a fan of the Russell signing last year. And I am happy if he moves on to another team. Time to move on. He served us well for 1 year

  36. Centre of attention says:

    Lowetide: Hopefully PC doesn’t get involved in a bidding war. He can’t afford to overspend on Russell.

    That’s why we are hearing different, interesting names now.

    Chiarelli is checking down his list.

    -extremely Samuel L Jackson voice-

    hold onto your butts.

  37. dustrock says:

    jonrmcleod:
    According to Spector, the Flames, Canucks, or Leafs could outbid the Oilers on Russell.

    Best news I’ve heard all day.

  38. adamjames says:

    There seems to be a little bit of momentum to that “Nuge for Galchenyk +1st” rumor. That certainly fits the theme of the “Aquire the whole draft” thread a while back.

    Would seem to be pretty decent value for Nuge?

  39. dustrock says:

    adamjames:
    There seems to be a little bit of momentum to that “Nuge for Galchenyk +1st” rumor. That certainly fits the theme of the “Aquire the whole draft” thread a while back.

    Would seem to be pretty decent value for Nuge?

    Ill probably be in the minority but I’m fine with that deal. Maybe they can sign Hanzal and the forward group would look pretty good.

  40. Kinger_Oil.redux says:

    dustrock: Best news I’ve heard all day.

    – He can get a DelZotto or Kulikov, or Franson or Polack for probably cheaper/same range.

    – Of course he needs 2 D IMO if Russel leaves, (or one Stud)

  41. Scungilli Slushy says:

    SoxandOil:
    At a Flames STH event today Treliving announced they are going 7-3-1 for expansion and that going forward they will draft a goalie in the first 2 rounds every 2 years. Doesn’t pertain to this thread but still interesting to see other teams strategy.

    Perfect! For us.

  42. Lowetide says:

    adamjames:
    There seems to be a little bit of momentum to that “Nuge for Galchenyk +1st” rumor. That certainly fits the theme of the “Aquire the whole draft” thread a while back.

    Would seem to be pretty decent value for Nuge?

    Where is this coming from? Seems like Wilde wrote about it as an idea and now it is taking off as if it is real. Strange.

  43. Centre of attention says:

    Lowetide: Where is this coming from? Seems like Wilde wrote about it as an idea and now it is taking off as if it is real. Strange.

    Its really really funny because before he started writing about it I tweeted him asking if he would do a Nuge for Galchenyuk deal one for one. he told me no he wouldn’t, we had a back and forth.

    later, its now Nuge for Galch AND a first? When did Montreal have to add a first? I take that deal every day of the week.

  44. adamjames says:

    Lowetide,

    I saw the Wilde tweet and Dustin Nielson mention it as well. Seem to recall Nielson being sorta accurate and maybe plugged in at points in the off-season.

  45. Aron_S says:

    Centre of attention,

    Matheson was on fire on Twitter tonight, so I asked him if he had any thoughts on it, but no reply for me.

    If it was a first + Galchenyuk, I’m all over that with a Bonino/Hanzal signing.

  46. highgloveside says:

    Considering they didn’t list Ethan Bear, Khaira or Laleggia, I wouldn’t say that Benson was left out strictly because of injury. Everyone listed they looked at how they improved this year, with Benson only playing 33 games, they couldn’t say how he improved. A Benson article is a completely different article than the type written here.

    Reading something that is not there

  47. --hudson-- says:

    Jim Matheson @NHLbyMatty

    While teams are scrambling to work deals to keep players they want away from Vegas, Oilers are in ho-hum mode. No worries

    Hmmmm….

    I’m glad Chia is ho-hum in moving a player, but hope he doesn’t miss an opportunity to buy low on a couple pieces

  48. LMHF#1 says:

    Not taking Debrincat is already potentially costing them. He could be arriving in the NHL this coming season and would give the Oilers a great degree of flexibility in terms of moving a forward with another RH scorer in the bank.

    Instead we have the guy who will probably and sadly be felled by injury.

    This was an easy choice and they flat out blew it.

  49. Pandaup says:

    If I read this correctly, Benson had pubitis a year ago, and a sports hernia (completely different injury) this year. Both afflictions are problematic, but he recovered from the first (so now history) and we await news on the second. This is not however a “recurrent” injury but rather 2 separate events. Had Benson gone through an injury free WHL career he would have been a high first round pick. This was a risky but enormous ceiling round 2 pick. Still is. We wait.

  50. Dixs35 says:

    Kind of off topic but has anyone heard why the oil didn’t sign svoboda. He put up some crazy numbers in lower leagues. Was it just him not wanting to or did they just say no to him. He strikes me as a guy who even if they signed could just stay in Europe for a couple more years to marinate and not count as understand it to the 50 man roster.

    Also it looks like CBJ can’t protect Anderson. Would a 2nd next year be enough and just leave letestu unprotected. He’s a guilty pleasure of mine and seems to fit like a glove for a PC type player

  51. dustrock says:

    Pandaup:
    If I read this correctly, Benson had pubitis a year ago, and a sports hernia (completely different injury) this year. Both afflictions are problematic, but he recovered from the first (so now history) and we await news on the second. This is not however a “recurrent” injury but rather 2 separate events. Had Benson gone through an injury free WHL career he would have been a high first round pick. This was a risky but enormous ceiling round 2 pick. Still is. We wait.

    Not a doctor but I play one on TV.

    I believe the concern is about 2 significant injuries in the groin area, which is key for hockey and is historically an area that is difficult to fully heal. You can have surgery on a hernia but the success rate isn’t as great as you would hope, and I believe there is a greater likelihood of further hernias down the line.

    He might be a fantastic athlete and a surefire top 6 forward, but if he has some inherited weakness in his groin, he might be one of those players who just don’t make it.

  52. russ99 says:

    Centre of attention: She says interesting things at times. That’s definitely for sure.

    Wouldn’t be shocked if its one of Katz’s kids twitter account. Maybe hears the suits talking about something every now and then while around the organization and then fills in the blanks. Would also explain the pin-up profile pic and the Garfield references. Classic teenagerisms.

    Seems to me that Fussy’s source was cleaned out in the post-Chia hiring old boy housecleaning, and everything posted since then has been out of spite, to unsettle players, trading partners and Chiarelli

    Besides, the new regime holds things close to the vest, so I doubt they’d leak anything like that anymore.

    I look at that for amusement than any real information.

  53. N64 says:

    See

    Pandaup: If I read this correctly, Benson had pubitis a year ago, and a sports hernia (completely different injury

    Not necessarily unrelated. Sports hernia operation is too generic to tell us what the surgery dealt with. Here’s one surgeon that jokes he’d like that term to be banned. And when you read why you’ll see he’s dealt with a lot of cases that sound like Benson’s. After the Giants came to play the Oil Kings and the Oilers shut Benson down who knows where they went to get to the root cause. We wait.

    http://www.foxsports.com/nfl/story/dr-william-meyers-gets-right-to-the-core-of-athletes-injuries-120215

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