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2018 Player Report Card: Justin Schultz

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Justin Schultz’s 2017-18 campaign was a far cry from the numbers the defenseman posted for the Stanley Cup-winning team of 2016-17.

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Washington Capitals at Pittsburgh Penguins Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Name: Justin Schultz

Position: Defenseman

Shoots: Right

Age: 27 (28 on 7/6/2018)

2017/2018 Stats: 63GP/4G/23A/27P

Career Resume:

Image via: hockeyDB

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Justin Schultz’s Fancy Stats

Season Team GP TOI CF CA CF% FF FA FF% SF SA SF% GF GA GF% SCF SCA SCF% HDCF HDCA HDCF% HDGF HDGA HDGF% On-Ice SH% On-Ice SV% PDO Off. Zone Faceoffs Neu. Zone Faceoffs Def. Zone Faceoffs Off. Zone Faceoff %
Season Team GP TOI CF CA CF% FF FA FF% SF SA SF% GF GA GF% SCF SCA SCF% HDCF HDCA HDCF% HDGF HDGA HDGF% On-Ice SH% On-Ice SV% PDO Off. Zone Faceoffs Neu. Zone Faceoffs Def. Zone Faceoffs Off. Zone Faceoff %
20172018 PIT 63 1017.0333333333 999 1009 49.75 758 708 51.71 563 546 50.77 53 38 58.24 449 479 48.38 206 213 49.16 26 17 60.47 9.41 93.04 1.025 354 401 301 54.05
20162017 PIT 78 1304.0333333333 1277 1214 51.26 966 862 52.84 730 643 53.17 71 48 59.66 645 561 53.48 289 212 57.68 43 24 64.18 9.73 92.53 1.023 466 529 357 56.62
20152016 EDM 45 727.1 643 673 48.86 459 500 47.86 335 355 48.55 23 36 38.98 290 315 47.93 108 135 44.44 15 19 44.12 6.87 89.86 0.967 204 245 226 47.44
20152016 PIT 18 206.93333333333 194 194 50.00 151 144 51.19 120 103 53.81 14 6 70.00 103 83 55.38 50 25 66.67 10 2 83.33 11.67 94.17 1.058 66 60 56 54.10
20142015 EDM 81 1484.05 1386 1373 50.24 1033 1020 50.32 744 722 50.75 64 72 47.06 634 681 48.21 239 282 45.87 38 40 48.72 8.60 90.03 0.986 533 568 315 62.85
20132014 EDM 74 1286.4666666667 1036 1381 42.86 780 1045 42.74 552 729 43.09 47 62 43.12 531 638 45.42 212 260 44.92 29 36 44.62 8.51 91.50 1.000 360 478 437 45.17
20122013 EDM 48 795.2 656 839 43.88 485 652 42.66 344 462 42.68 27 44 38.03 341 439 43.72 141 168 45.63 16 23 41.03 7.85 90.48 0.983 222 269 241 47.95
Data via: Natural Stat Trick

The man who invented and popularized the #SchultzChug came into 2017-18 with high hopes after setting career highs in the goals and assists departments a year prior. And unfortunately, two weeks into the new season, Schultz suffered a concussion in a game against the Oilers.

After missing an extended period of play, including a road trip that saw the Penguins go 1-3-1, Schultz returned to give a nice boost to the shaky Pittsburgh blue line.

In his first game back against the Arizona Coyotes on November 8, Schultz scored the first goal in the first minute of the game and helped the Pens go on to win the contest.

The statistics above show that Schultz still had a positive impact on the team while on the ice. His CF% and FF% took a slight dip from last year, but they are respectable numbers.

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Season Splits and Miscellaneous Stats

Image via: Yahoo!
Image via: Yahoo!

My biggest takeaway from these spits is that Schultz loves to ruin the Flyers. That’s a good enough reason to keep him around for the long haul.

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Quotes and Tweets

“He’s a big-time player, for sure. Anytime he’s in the lineup, we’re a better team.” —Matt Murray

“He has real good offensive instincts. He sees the ice extremely well. That’s what he can bring to our team. That’s what he has brought to our team.” —Mike Sullivan

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Final Grades

Even Strength: B

Schultz’s numbers in 2017-18 resemble the stat lines he has posted throughout his career, not including last year’s campaign. With that, I’ll give Schultzy this grade based on his past career numbers and say 2016-17 will probably be an anomaly looking back when he hangs up the skates.

Special Teams: B

Branching off from his even strength grade, Schultz did register 10 power-play assists this year, 7 fewer from 2016-17. He’s still a reliable shot taker from the point and isn’t afraid to let it rip when given the chance.

Durability: C

Playing in 15 fewer games this year from 2016-17 doesn’t help his cause with point production or with defensive stability. With some extra time to recuperate this summer, look for Schultz to come back firing on all cylinders with a top-4 role again next season.

Playoffs: B

In the 12 games played this postseason, Schultz tallied a goal, 7 assists, and a +5 +/- rating.

Overall Grade: B

FINAL WORD: Schultz’s presence is vital to fill out the top-4 with Kris Letang, Olli Maatta, and Brian Dumoulin. That’s a pretty nice core to build around. Add in a pleasantly surprising addition in Jamie Oleksiak and the defense for next season is pretty much set in stone.

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Poll

How would you rate Justin Schultz’s 2017-18 season?

This poll is closed

  • 10%
    A
    (50 votes)
  • 68%
    B
    (323 votes)
  • 20%
    C
    (94 votes)
  • 0%
    D
    (3 votes)
  • 0%
    F
    (0 votes)
470 votes total Vote Now