Skip to Main Content
The Official Site of the Philadelphia Flyers

Flyers Hall of Fame left winger Dave "the Hammer" Schultz was born October, 14, 1949 in Waldheim, Saskatchewan. Drafted by the Flyers in the 5th round (52nd overall) of the 1969 NHL Draft, Schultz was more of a scorer than a fighter in his earliest hockey days but found a role for himself at the professional level by dropping the gloves with greater and greater frequency.

Schultz only spent four years in a Philadelphia Flyers uniform but they were certainly memorable seasons. It's fair to say that Schultz was the poster child for the Broad Street Bullies of the mid-1970s.

During his Flyers career, Schultz was the most vilified player around the National Hockey League. In Philadelphia, however, he could do no wrong. Schultz's stature as one of the most popular players among the local fan base that the organization honored in inducting him as the 20th member of the Flyers Hall of Fame in November 2009.

Schultz wasn't necessarily the best fighter in the NHL during his career, but he was among the most active and entertaining. The Hammer would work himself into a frenzy before he even hit the ice, and he had a flair for showmanship almost akin to a pro wrestling bad guy.

"The Hammer" - who also less famously went by the Sesame Street inspired nicknames of "Oscar" and "Grouch" as well as by "Zeus" for the thunder he brought - could also play hockey effectively in addition to being a frequent pugilist.

While Schultz's defining legacy was the fact that he topped 300 penalty minutes in three consecutive seasons (topping out at an astounding 472 in 1974-75), he also had a knack for coming through in the clutch.

The Hammer scored 20 goals in the Flyers' first Stanley Cup season and played an important role in each of the three playoff series the Flyers won on the way to claiming the 1973-74 championship. During the regular season that year, Schultz answered questions about his non-fighting prowess by scoring two hat tricks within a week.

In the playoffs, it was Schultz who scored the quarterfinal series clinching goal against the Atlanta Flames on the same night he laid a bloody beating on Flames forward Bryan Hextall Jr. (the father of future Flyers Hall of Fame goaltender and current-day general manager Ron Hextall). In the semifinals against the Rangers, Schultz's lopsided Game Seven pummeling of Rangers defenseman Dale Rolfe was demoralizing to the Blueshirts. In the Stanley Cup Final against the Boston Bruins, it was Schultz who set up Bobby Clarke for the Flyers captain's iconic Game Two overtime goal that proved critical to the Flyers winning their first Stanley Cup.

In many ways, Schultz's popularity in Philadelphia in those years rivaled even that of Clarke and Bernie Parent. Schultz even recorded a song, entitled "Penalty Box" that, solely owed to his local popularity, became a top-seller in local record stores and the most-requested single on Delaware Valley area radio stations.

For his Flyers career, Schultz played in 297 regular season games recording 51 goals, 115 points, 1,386 penalty minutes and a plus-70 rating at even strength. In 61 playoff games, he had seven goals, 16 points and 363 penalty minutes.

On September 29, 1976, the Flyers traded Schultz to the LA Kings for a 1977 fourth-round pick (Yves Gaillemette) and a 1978 second-round pick, later flipped to the Colorado Rockies and used on the selection of Merlin Malinoski.

Although he never again approached the stature in Philadelphia, Schultz went on to play for the Kings, Pittsburgh Penguins and Buffao Sabres in a 535-game NHL career (2,294 career penalty minutes). His most notable post-Flyers season came with the Penguins after being traded from the Kings early in the 1977-78 season. That year, Schultz posted a combined 11 goals, 36 points and 405 penalty minutes in 74 games.

Following his playing days, Schultz made his permanent home in the Delaware Valley. He remained a very popular figure at Flyers games and at Flyers Alumni games and events.

Schultz's older brother, the late Ray Schultz, also played for several years in the Flyers' organization at the minor league level. After a stint with the AHL's Richmond Robins, he suited up for the Lockhart Cup winning 1975-76 Philadelphia Firebirds of the North American Hockey League. A defenseman, Ray Schultz spent three seasons with the Firebirds. He was 46 and lived in Langhorne, Bucks County at the time of his September 1994 passing after a battle with cancer.