Oilers win the Justin Schultz Auction



It was a long, hype-filled road, but the highly regarded defensive prospect Justin Schultz has finally decided which team he will play for next year. And that team is the Edmonton Oilers.

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"The Decision" was finally narrowed down between Edmonton and Ottawa this afternoon before the soo-to-be 22 year old settled on the Oilers. His contract is a two year deal worth $925,000 in base salary and up to $2.85M in bonuses for a total cap hit of $3.77M.

It’s rare for prospects to choose not to sign with the team that chose them. Rarer still that they generate such interest across the league when they become free agents. Schultz was originally selected in the second round by the Ducks in 2008, but his stock quickly climbed when he became a leading scorer for the University of Wisconsin in the final two seasons of college hockey. Schultz’s point-per-game pace over those two years was 1.17, which is good for a forward but outstanding for a blueliner.

Thomas Drance of Canucks Army looked at Schultz’s numbers recently and found they compare favorably to a number of other quality offensive defenders who have made the NHL recently.

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Not A Saviour

So yes Oilers fans should be excited. The team has added a legit prospect on the back-end who could become a fixture on a potent power play down the road. On the other hand, everyone should remember that Schultz hasn’t played a game in the NHL yet and it’s not like he’s going to become the Oilers blueline anchor overnight, but the kid has potential to be a very good blueliner.

The hype surrounding him wasn’t necessarily out of step with how good he is as a prospect, but let’s keep in mind Schultz is still a rookie and it usually takes kids a few years to really get their legs under them at the NHL level. Expectations should be that he can be a 2nd pairing D-man, and help out an already good PP.

Schultz has a bomb of a shot and excellent vision. This is a solid signing because he doesn’t cost much. They didn’t have to overpay him, like most teams do with UFAs.

    • Wax Man Riley

      Because he is a UFA technically due to the loophole he used to get out of Anaheim. But he is a UFA with a max contract of 2 years at rookie max. That is my understanding anyways.

  • Oilers4ever

    I sure hope we don’t look like a bunch of morons two years from now after all the hype on this kid if he turns out to be a bust. There are already Canucks and Leaf fans out there bashing this kid as being to small and such yet they were sure all for him joining their teams before he chose where to go. Such are Canuck and Leaf fans. 🙂

    • Wax Man Riley

      How do you look like a moron for him signing here? He is a highly sought after free agent that chose to sign his ELC here.


      If he doesn’t perform, he gets paid less than $1M. He is then an RFA at the end of it, and you can qualify him or let him walk. Add to that, we gave up nothing to get him.

      Win all around for the Oil.

  • G Money

    Sweet. Yes, this kid could still be a bust, but that article by Drance is a real eyeopener, and confirms that the hype was justified.

    For all intents and purposes, it’s roughly equivalent to the Oilers getting the first and second overall picks this year, and picking both Yakupov and Murray (or Reilly or Reinhart).


  • Wax Man Riley

    Like Jason said, he may or may not become an important part of the Oiler defensive core. But to me that is not what is important here.

    What is important here is he picked Edmonton. He had 25 other choices and he picked Edmonton. Even if he never plays a game in the NHL, the fact that he picked Edmonton over anyone else in the NHL is a huge moral boost for the city and its fans.

  • Lofty

    Even if you think of him as purely a commodity its a big win for the organization. He will have value over the next 2 seasons no matter what happens next season. Dmen at that age with a resume and a low price tag add value to the organization.

  • Grumpy OM

    We have to be patient with this kid. By all accounts he is what we need , but the media has been hyping this kid for months. If we are patient we could have another gem here. [Remember a guy by the name of Coffey, he struggled at the start.]

    He is no different than the Yak , RNH , Hall and Ebs. We have to get behind these kids now and move forward.

    What makes this so exciting is that people are now looking at Edmonton as a place they want to play and live.

    Come on Smitty , get on board these kids need YOU to mentor them and show them the way !!!

  • Lofty

    I think the biggest reason behind the hype is that he doesn’t cost a billion dollars. Suter and Parise are going to get rich, and to an extent they do deserve that. Even worse, the second tier of guys are going to get paid like front liners.

    This a big checkmark on the to do list. Almost the entire league wanted to sign him. He is a right-handed, offensive D-man. Sound like something we could use? And he came cheap. Management pulled out all of the stops because the reward far outweighs the gain here. Welcome to Oil Country Justin Schultz!

  • Lofty

    GREAT JOB OILERS!!!! Thanks GRETZ,COFFEE,LOWE,MCTAVISH,TAMBOLINI,KRUEGER, you all did well. Thanks to the young oilers also. Keep the flame going.SCHULTZ welcome to the OILERS. You really would not looked good in feathers. DUCKS SUCK! Jump on the band wagon, RYAN It’s a fast moving train.To my GV BLACKHAWK friend in your response to my post i was referring to the great oiler inforcer GEORGES LARAQUE not JOSH GEORGES dip shi!!.

    • GVBlackhawk

      Hey Einstein. You misspelled the following: Coffey, MacTavish, Tambellini, Laracque, enforcer. Well done genius. My 5 year old daughter has a better handle on grammar than you do.

      I didn’t think you would be able to detect the satire in my comments. Please look up the definition of satire on Wikipedia.

      I know what you meant. Careful with the insults — dumb people don’t look good when they call their intellectual superiors dipshi!

  • Grumpy OM

    The best news is now the Oil aren’t under pressure to overpay a Top 4 D man tomorrow. A reasonably priced but legitimate bottom pairing D man might be nice, however, plus a hardnosed bottom 6 forward.
    I also join the chorus calling for Oilers Nation to welcome JS with open arms but also show him some patience.

  • John Chambers


    This s a joyous day in Oilerville for sure. I am a super happy Oiler fan today and this includes still being happy with the Yakupov pick last week.

    Schultz is such a prize and yat I hope the Oil keeps turning it on and up for the next two months with free agency and trades as well.

    I see that Sc hultz is a two year entry7 level so for those earlier who asked , after this he will be a RFA.

    Also, for those who earlier suggested the Oil could be morons if Schultz doesn’t pan out after two years, how can we be when he cost no assets and is like a draft pick in itself.

    But he is a still just a rookie and young kid like the now others and so with trust of Krueger as coach, I hope that the kid is coached accordinbg to his talents and skill level he has.

    Now we have the start of somethin very special with a solid core of Hall, Nuge, Yakupov, Eberle, Petry, Smid, the other Schultz, then Hemsky, Paajarvi, Lander, and….. then the prospects upcoming such as Klefbom, Musil, Marancin, Gernat, Zharkov, Pitlick, Hamilton, Bunz, Roy, etc.