The Pittsburgh Penguins have acquired defenseman Justin Schultz from the Edmonton Oilers in exchange for a 2016 third-round draft pick, it was announced today by executive vice president and general manager Jim Rutherford.
Schultz is in the final year of a contract that carries an average annual value of $3.9 million. The Oilers are retaining 50% of his salary. Schultz will be a restricted free agent following this season.
Schultz, 25, has played three-plus years with the Oilers, tallying 28 goals, 73 assists and 101 points in 248 career regular-season games.
The 6-foot-2, 193-pound right-handed shooting blueliner has appeared in 45 games with Edmonton this year, scoring three goals and 10 points in 45 contests.
The Kelowna, British Columbia product had his best season in 2013-14, establishing career highs in goals (11) and points (33) in 74 games with the Oilers.
Schultz was one of the NHL’s top rookies during the shortened ’12-13 season, earning a berth on the NHL All-Rookie Team after scoring eight goals, 19 assists and 27 points while playing all 48 games.
Prior to the NHL resuming play in January 2013, Schultz broke into the professional ranks with Edmonton’s top minor-league affiliate, the Oklahoma City Barons of the American Hockey League. Schultz starred with the Barons, scoring 18 goals, 30 assists and 48 points in just 34 games with Oklahoma City.
Despite playing less than half of that season in the AHL, he won that league’s Eddie Shore Award as the best defenseman, in addition to being named to both the AHL First-Team All-Star and All-Rookie Teams. His goal and point total led all AHL D-men.
That summer, he represented Canada at the World Championship, where he had four assists in eight games.
Schultz played four years of college hockey at the University of Wisconsin from 2009-12. He was a NCAA All-American and a Hobey Baker Finalist (best college hockey player) in each of his last two years.
Schultz was originally drafted by the Anaheim Ducks in the second round (43rd overall) of the 2008 NHL Draft, but never signed with the Ducks. He instead joined the Edmonton Oilers as a free agent following his collegiate career.