NHL Draft: Blackhawks Should Look at Zach Benson

2023 Kubota CHL Top Prospects Game - Practice
2023 Kubota CHL Top Prospects Game - Practice / Dennis Pajot/GettyImages

The Chicago Blackhawks currently have the 3rd best odds at selecting Connor Bedard, however the odds are much more likely we draft 4th or 5th from our current standing. IF we do draft 4th or 5th a player that Kyle Davidson should highly consider is RW Zach Benson.

In the recent CHL prospect showcase it was clear to all that watched that Benson is one of the most skilled forwards in the 2023 draft class. The 5'10 RW plays for the Winnipeg Ice and is the best player on a loaded roster. He has 65 points in just 39 games in the WHL as a diminutive wing.

Speed and skating North-South isn't going to wow any scout when it comes to Benson, however his stick work, hands, and offensive IQ is likely 2nd best in the class. Benson appears to also have the highest motor and compete in the entire draft. I would rank him first in compete when you look at the likely 1st round talents.

Make no mistake about it, Benson is not a secondary prize. He is a legit contender from this 2023 class to become a franchise changing player. Smaller, ok skater with average speed.... and yet is at or above elite on all other categories. His play on defense reminds me of when Alex DeBrincat started working on his forecheck and backchecking a few years into his Chicago tenure.

If I were GM of the Blackhawks I'd have a very tough decision between Michkov and Benson at 4 and I wouldn't even hesitate to select him at #5 over Smith and Dvorsky. Get to know him!