Kraken make Matthew Beniers their 1st-ever pick at 2nd overall
The Seattle Kraken drafted forward Matthew Beniers with the second overall pick in the 2021 NHL Draft.
Weight: 174 lbs
Club: University of Michigan (NCAA)
(Stats source: EliteProspects.com)
Beniers had an incredible freshman season with Michigan in 2020-21, ranking third among rookies in points in the NCAA. His season was ultimately cut short due to COVID-19 cancellations, but he indicated that he may return to college for at least one more campaign.
Despite being the youngest player on Team USA's roster at the 2021 world juniors, Beniers played a vital role in helping lead his team to a gold medal. Centering the second line, he recorded one goal and two assists.
Beniers has shown that he has the potential to develop into an elite two-way center in the NHL and has performed at every level of hockey he's played in so far. He'll surely help out offensively, but a lot of his contributions on the ice come away from the puck.
What they're saying
"Beniers is the top center prospect in this draft. He has a quality NHL-caliber skill set, but not a lot jumps off the page. He is a top prospect because he is an elite competitor and makes the most of his toolkit every game," writes The Athletic's Corey Pronman. "His work ethic shows through how hard he forechecks and backchecks, how every play is made with speed, how he wins a ton of battles, and how fearless he is getting to the high-traffic areas. Beniers wills his way to puck possession and scoring chances, while also able to set up a lot of plays."
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