Thursday, August 27, 2009

WCH loves Justin Schultz, but perhaps not as much as he should

Chris @ WCH likes Justin Schultz well enough to include him on his "Best of the West: 20009's Top Recruits" series.

Role he'll likely play: Schultz joins a crowded UW blueline that already has Ryan McDonagh, Cody Goloubef, Brendan Smith, and Jake Gardiner, so minutes, especially on the powerplay should be hard to come by this first season. That said, Schultz is a pure playmaker and if he finds ways to create offense, he'll earn more ice time.

Why he is ranked here: Schultz won his division's Defenseman of the Year honors thanks to some impressive point totals the past two seasons in the BCHL. Schultz has huge potential to be an excellent offensive defenseman.

Why he'll be great: Schultz has the ability to rack up a lot of assists, especially if he starts seeing powerplay time.

Why he might not: Points are going to be harder to come by, so Schultz will have to become more well-rounded as a player. He added about 15 lbs. of weight last season, but still isn't the strongest guy.

But he doesn't like him well enough to put him in the top 10, placing him at #11 behind gopher defensive recruit Seth Helgeson.

As you might know, in all things recruiting I defer to Chuck and Gandalf here on the blog, and so I'll do so again now:
Chuck: Justin Schultz immediately steps into the UW lineup as the #5 defenseman. AT BEST Helgeson is the #6 at Minnesota behind Fairchild, Ness, Leddy, Lofquist and Wehrs. I still don't understand how Helgeson is more valuable, or rated higher.

Gandalf: I'm cool w/ Schultz being under the radar. He's this year's Jake Gardiner, a better defensive game who doesn't skate as well (who does?). He'll be an immediate contributor to the team and we (as in Badger fans) can all look back and laugh at everyone else when he is on the All Rookie team w/ Dylan Olsen.

Comparing gopher dmen w/ Wisconsin dmen is like having a 100' length of rope when you are climbing down a 200' wall, the 100' rope looks useful, until you actually try to use it and realize all the actual good defensemen in your state decided to wear the Cardinal and White instead of falling to their death.
Thanks for the insight, boys!

From my perspective, I'd simply like to state that no self-respecting defenseman goes to minnesota.