Vancouver Giants star forward Tyler Benson will undergo surgery for a lower body injury.
Benson, who is 2016 NHL draft eligible, was expected to lead the Giants this year but it appears that the Giants may be without their star winger to start the season. Here’s more from the press release:
The Vancouver Giants announced on Wednesday that forward Tyler Benson will undergo surgery to mend a lower body ailment. The timeline for his return to the lineup is undetermined but is not expected to be lengthy.
“The health and wellbeing of our players is our highest priority as an organization,” said Giants Executive Vice President and General Manager Scott Bonner. “While it’s disappointing to see that Tyler may miss some time, we want to make sure he is back at 100% before he returns to the lineup.”
Benson, an Edmonton native, was drafted first overall by the Giants in the 2013 WHL Bantam Draft. The 17-year-old tallied 14 goals and 31 assists in 62 games in his rookie season with Vancouver in 2014/15. Benson played in both the Under 18 World Championships and the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup over the summer, helping Team Canada to bronze and gold medals respectively.
The Giants will provide more details once they become available.
Although no timeline has been given for his return, a delayed start to Benson’s season could impact his draft stock. The Edmonton native was in the conversation to be a top-10 pick in next June’s NHL Entry Draft and is being lauded as the WHL’s top 2016 draft eligible prospect. With the Vancouver Giants hosting the 2016 CHL Top Prospects game in January, Benson will need to get back to himself quickly to ensure that he doesn’t fall out of the top-10.
The Giants begin the regular season with their home opener on Friday, September 25 against the Seattle Thunderbirds.