Benn strikes again for Stars

DEREK VAN DIEST, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:17 AM ET

EDMONTON - Jamie Benn can’t explain it, but there is something about facing the Edmonton Oilers.

The Dallas Stars winger has lit up the Oilers in his few career encounters against the club.

Thursday’s goal and assist in a 3-2 win gave Benn nine points in six games against Edmonton, with a pair of games against them still left this season.

“I don’t know what it is,” Benn said. “I guess I like playing the Canadian teams, it’s always exciting, being a Canadian boy and a western boy. It’s fun to play these teams.”

Benn, a Victoria native, went into the contest having collected five goals and two assists in five previous games against Edmonton.

He had scored a goal in the teams’ previous encounter this year in Dallas.

“He’s played really well, it hasn’t just been against the Oilers, he’s been good against a lot of teams,” said Stars head coach Marc Crawford. “He’s got extreme versatility for us. He can play on a top-scoring line, he can play in a checking role and he’s the type of player whose skating just stands out.”

Benn, 21, scored the Stars’ first goal on Thursday, beating Nikolai Khabibulin on a breakaway, then set up James Neal on the power play for the eventual winner.

Selected in the fifth round — 129 overall — of the 2007 NHL Entry Draft, Benn cracked the Stars roster out of junior last season. He finished the year with 41 points in 82 games. He had four goals and two assists in four games against the Oilers last season. This year, he has 13 goals and 19 assists for 32 points in 44 games.

“I think I’m getting a little bit more comfortable out there and am holding on to the puck more this year,” Benn said. “I think it’s experience and maturity and it’s going well.”


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