Monday, June 26, 2017

Justin Schultz Jersey Card

When there's give, there's usually take - then there might be take-back. Take Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Justin Schultz, for example, who came into the league as a sought-after College free agent (after deciding not to sign with the Anaheim Ducks), then became pretty much of a pariah after things soured with the Edmonton Oilers and who, even after a certain redemption with the Pens' 2015-16 Stanley Cup win, had to settle for a one-year deal last summer.

According to what his agent, Wade Arnott, told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, things will be different this time around:
We took a one-year, discounted deal to come back from last year and build upon what he did. The player took a lot of the risk. The player performed. Now the player should be rewarded.
While I understand what he meant, the tone and the word "rewarded" seems so... entitled. After all, his guy had a three-year, highly lucrative "show me" deal in which he thoroughly and completely under-performed, then he did alright in the playoffs last year and finally was a good return on investment for one season, and now he's using some top-pairing language as if Schultz had been that player all along?

It seems risky to me. It seems like he's asking between $5.5M and $6.5M per season for three-to-five years, which is Andrei Markov money, better than Karl Alzner money, two players who have outperformed Schultz every year since he's been in the league (and then some, in Markov's case).

But Schultz has two Stanley Cups. And he was seventh among points for a defenseman. Then again, Andy Delmore and Michael Del Zotto also had good statistical seasons and never amounted to much when all facets of the game were considered.

Here he is wearing the Oilers' current/retro white (now-away) uniform, on card #RM-JS from Upper Deck's 2013-14 Series 2 set and UD Game Jersey sub-set:
It features a dark, navy-blue jersey swatch that he wore in a rookie photo shoot.

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