NHL Rumors: Ottawa Senators among suitors for Justin Schultz

By Matthew Kirkpatrick

NHL Rumors have begun to swirl around free agent defenceman Justin Schultz, and the Ottawa Senators.

Schultz became a free agent yesterday when he failed to come to an agreement with the Anaheim Ducks prior to the deadline set out by the NHL under the current CBA.

It is unclear why Schultz would not sign with Anaheim, but NHL rumors point to him wanting to play in Canada.

Anaheim had drafted the blueliner in 2008 in the second round (43rd overall.)

Schultz has been plying his trade with the University of Wisconsin Badgers for the past three season. Last season saw him score 16 goals and 44 points in 37 games.

Over his collegiate career Schultz scored 40 goals, 73 assists for 113 points in 121 games.

The young defender is considered an elite offensive right hand shot defence prospect. It is believed that he could potentially step right into the NHL next season and play in a team’s top four.

Ottawa is looking to add depth to their blueline with only four defencemen currently under contract, and they believe adding a player like Schultz would only improve the club.

It would certainly open the door to them moving Sergei Gonchar’s big ticket, and make the loss of Filip Kuba to free agency that much easier.

However, one would have to question the logic behind acquiring another right hand shot offensive minded blueliner with Erik Karlsson already entrenched, and 2012 first rounder Cody Ceci now in the system, but it has been proven time and time again that you can never have too many defencemen.

NHL Rumors suggest that Ottawa is not the only suitor that will come calling as the Vancouver Canucks, Edmonton Oilers, Detroit Red Wings, Chicago Blackhawks, Toronto Maple Leafsand the New York Rangers are all said to be interested in acquiring his services.

One thing that certainly will not happen is: a bidding war because as a rookie Schultz can only be offered an entry level deal which is subject to the rookie salary cap.

If the NHL Rumors are true, and Schultz wants to play closer to home; a contract with Edmonton, or Vancouver would make sense as the 21-year-old is from Kelowna, BC.

Come back to Rant Sports for more as this story develops.



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