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Oilers Sign Schultz To A One-Year Deal

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Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

The last piece of the Oilers roster puzzle (I've given up hope of finding a legit second line centre) is finally in place. The Oilers and Justin Schultz have agreed to terms on a new one-year deal that will pay him $3.675M. Considering that Schultz was a restricted defenceman I had hoped that the Oilers would get significantly better value on a one-year deal or would have gotten a second year at a price perhaps a little lower than this. In the end the Oilers got neither. I don't exactly find that surprising.

Schultz is a very interesting player. The offensive upside is obviously there, but in his own end of the rink he tends to struggle (on his best nights) Coming off his two-year ELC which paid $3.775M when you factor in bonuses Schultz didn't want to take much of a pay cut, but hockey is a results driven business and he hasn't yet shown an ability to produce a good outcome in his own end of the rink. To me this deal seems like the Oilers caved, that they decided that rather than risk a contract dispute that it was better to just get a deal done before the start of camp and then fight this fight again next summer with another year of data.

I'm not sure that doesn't just lead to another over payment next summer, but I'm not the General Manager so it's not up to me. And who know, maybe Schultz learns how to play defence between now and then.