|Hey now, Double Nickel!|
Stats/Season Summary: Schultz had a typically slow offensive year, tallying one goal and nine assists in 72 games to go along with a +6 rating and 12 penalty minutes. He also finished second on the team in blocked shots, impressive when you consider he missed 10 games with a broken finger. Sarge saw time on all three defensive pairings this year, and played with pretty much every other defenseman on the roster for at least two games. He saw big minutes on the penalty kill and proved useful in many other facets of the game, though he did have the occasional disaster that led to the ire of Caps fans. The problem with Schultz this year was that his +/- rating dropped over 45 points. Grade: C+
Role Play: For the most part, Schultz did exactly what he was supposed to. He blocked alot of shots and he used his shot blocking ability well with his large frame. Schultz's job isn't to score goals, it's to prevent them, and he did a (mostly) good job. He may not be a gem in open ice, but he usually doesn't need to be. He was a big part of the Caps resurgence on the penalty kill, too. "Double Nickel" (thanks Locker) did, however, suffer from pylon syndrome a few times, often at inopportune moments. Grade: C+
Playoffs: To no one's surprise, Schultz was held pointless in the nine playoff games he partook in this year, though he did have a +1 rating and six penalty minutes. He was very good in the Rangers series, especially in the penalty kill, but struggled bigtime against the Lightning's bigger, more physical forwards, especially because he was asked to shoulder a bigger offensive load. Especially in the fourth game, he was simply brutal, but by that point the series was over. Indifference. Grade: C-
Future Potential: Schultz is under contract for three more seasons at $2.75 million per; he isn't going anywhere. The Caps need defensive defensemen like him, and he has earned his niche within the organization. He's not flashy but he gets the job done for the most part, even if he is way overpaid. There are worse things than having a shot-blocker in back. Grade: C
The next report card will be posted on May 27 and will feature defenseman Karl Alzner.