Tom Gilbert is my favorite Oiler defenseman and having an outstsanding season, so if you don’t want to read the rest of this post I’m fine with it. Nick Schultz is not a similar player type, in fact he’s a stay-at-home type. Schultz has grit, size (although not huge, 6.01, 200) and is a mobile defenseman. This is a player who I’d suggest is quite similar in style to Ladislav Smid. He’s 29, has 9 NHL seasons of experience and has played 743 NHL games.He was apparently a favorite of Jacques Lemaire according to the people talking on television as I type this post.Schultz is a 3.5M cap hit and has 2 years left on his contract and is from Strasbourg, Saskatchewan. That’s pretty close to Regina.
BEHIND THE NET SAYS……..Nick Schultz
- Offensive Zone Start: 41.0 third toughest among Minnesota regulars over 35GP, although he faced the toughest among those who have played over 40 games
- CorsiRel: -8.7, worst on the team among regulars over 35GP
- Qual Comp: 5th toughest, although the 3-5 D appear quite close
More on this later, but dealing Tom Gilbert for Nick Schultz and calling it progress is impossible. Gilbert is a quality 2-way defenseman and Schultz is a player who can step in and play big minutes at evens and penalty-kill for the Oilers. Schultz has had injury troubles for the Wild, but has dressed for almost all of Minnesota’s games since the lockout.
The Oilers addressed their troubles at defense by dealing their best defenseman. Someone smarter than me will need to explain this transaction.