Edmonton Oilers defenceman Justin Schultz has been named the winner of the Eddie Shore Award as American Hockey League Defenseman of the Year. He is the first rookie in the 55-year history of the Eddie Shore Award to earn the honour.
Schultz, a 6’2”, 185-pound Kelowna, British Columbia native signed as a free agent with Edmonton last summer, but began the season with Oklahoma City. His impact with the Oilers’ AHL affiliate was immediate. He played in 34 games with the Barons and scored 48 points (18G, 30A). That included a franchise record tying 10 game point scoring streak and a separate nine game point streak.
Despite not playing in Oklahoma City since January 5th, Schultz’ 48 points, 18 goals and 19.6 percent shooting percentage is still tops among AHL defenceman.
Schultz did much of his scoring for the Barons on special teams. Of his 48 points, 25 of them (7G, 18A) came with the man advantage. Heading into the Barons last weekend of the season, Schultz’ 25 power play points still leads the team. Mark Arcobello is second on the club with 24 power-play points (6G, 18A). Schultz also accounted for two of the Barons five shorthanded goals on the season.
This marks the third postseason award Schultz has earned. He was named to the All-Rookie Team and was named a First Team AHL All Star last week. He also earned CCM / AHL Player of the Month honours for October and CCM / AHL Rookie of the Month honours for November.
Schultz has continued his solid play with the Oilers. Through 42 games this season, he is the top scoring rearguard on the team with 21 points (6G, 15A).