#4 – FORWARD, JAMIE BENN
Dallas Stars captain Jamie Benn has come a very long way to being an Art Ross Trophy winner, 40-goal scorer, and all around two-way hockey maestro.
A fifth-round selection in 2007, it was safe to assume that Benn could very well flame out and fail to come to fruition as a true NHLer. However, he took things into his own hands as a captain and leader and proved many wrong.
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At 27 years old, the former Kelowna Rockets winger is already fourth in franchise history in goals (212) and third in assists (290). His 0.89 points per game is behind only Mike Modano for Stars with at least 300 games played.
Benn, a 2015 NHL All-Star, was signed to an 8-year, $9.5 million AAV contract this last offseason, signaling a long-term commitment to Dallas. Benn’s 230 points over the past three seasons is second in the NHL, as the physical, speedy winger has just hit his prime.
The 2014 Olympic gold medalist presents a style of hockey that no player in today’s game can duplicate. An unparalleled combination of bone-crushing, physical defense and board work, mixed with high-flying skating and beauteous puck-handling. If Evgeni Malkin‘s size met Alex Ovechkin‘s hands, you have yourself a Jamie Benn.
The all-around superstar’s dynamic ability is best exemplified with All-Star center Tyler Seguin by his side, but the 6’2″ native of Victoria, British Columbia has all the skill and size he needs to succeed as what many consider to be a top-ten player in the National Hockey League.