Sunday, September 6, 2009

09/10 Men's Previews: #6 Justin Schultz


Position: Defenseman
Year in School: Freshman
Shoots Right
Height: 6-2
Weight: 185
Hometown: West Kelowna, BC
Major: Undeclared
Previous Team: Westside Warriors (BCHL) last season

NHL Considerations: 2nd round draft pick of Anaheim in the 2008 NHL Draft.

08/09 Stats: 49 games, 15-35-50, 29 PIM
07/08 Stats: 57 games, 9-31-40

09/10 Role: 3rd pairing, PK or PP if there is an opening

08/09 Recap: Justin completed an outstanding BCHL career last season by being named the Interior Conferences top defenseman, for the second season in a row. He led the BCHL blue liners in pts/game, as the QB of the Westside Warrior’s offense. Justin also competed in the Junior A Challenge for the second season in a row and won silver losing to the Craig Smith captained Team USA. The previous season, Justin and freshman teammate Derek Lee took the gold at the event.

Biggest Strength: Justin is another gifted offensive dman who will be suiting up for the Badgers. Though to go along w/ his offensive game, from what I gather, he is solid in his own end too. I’m excited to see him in Cardinal & White and you should be too.

Biggest Weakness: Justin missed several games last season to a few injuries, which is always a possible re-occurring worry. The weight room will also be a help for Justin to help fill out his frame.

09/10 Thoughts: Justin should step in and be an immediate contributor to the Badgers this season. He is probably undervalued for the coming season due to the wealth of talent on the Badger blue line returning. Had McDonagh left for the pros, his role on the team could be even bigger. Like all blue liners there will be a transition between leagues, adjusting to the WCHA, but once that happens he should be fine, and Badger fans will be very happy. While his role this year may be limited, especially in special teams, it will be a good prep for the following season where ice time might be plentiful due to possible early departures of several players.

Justin was drafted in 2008 and went back to the BCHL. He probably could have decommitted and found a new home, but must want to be the best, knowing his best choice for a pro career on the blue line runs through Coach Oz and UW.

Prediction: 32 games, 4-14-18*
*All predictions for regular season only

Photo from the BCHL website