Capitals Sign Justin Schultz To Two-Year, $8 Million Contract


The Washington Capitals have signed unrestricted free agent defenseman Justin Schultz to a two-year contract that carries a cap hit of $4 million. The team will pay him $3 million in 2020-21 and $5 million the next season.

The 30-year-old defenseman recorded three goals, 12 points, and a -13 rating in 46 games with the Pittsburgh Penguins last season. In 482 career games with the Penguins and Edmonton Oilers, Schultz has recorded 50 goals, 214 points, and a -35 rating.

Schultz’s best season came in 2016-17 when he set career-highs in goals (12), assists (39), points (51), and plus-minus (+27) in 78 games. He was limited to just 75 games in the past two seasons due to multiple injuries.

Schultz, who won the Stanley Cup in back-to-back seasons with the Penguins (2016, 2017), will likely slide in the Capitals’ second defensive pairing with Dmitry Orlov.

In 56 career Stanley Cup Playoff games, Schultz has recorded six goals, 29 points, and a +3 rating.

Last season, the defenseman posted a 49.77% Corsi-for percentage, a 50.88% expected goals-for percentage, 36 hits, 50 blocked shots, 18 giveaways, and six takeaways while averaging 19:53 per game (fourth among Penguins’ defenseman), including 2:45 on the power-play (second).

Schultz was drafted by the Anaheim Ducks 43rd overall in the 2008 NHL Draft. Schultz signed as a collegiate free agent with the Oilers on June 29, 2012.

The Capitals made it a priority to add to their defense after they gave up average of 3.44 goals-per-game from December 22 onward (the most among the 24 teams that were invited to the NHL’s return-to-play plan) and allowed an average of 2.88 per game in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The Capitals now have about $3 million remaining in cap space after signing Schultz, according to CapFriendly. The team is also reportedly looking to add a forward.

By Harrison Brown

About Harrison Brown

Harrison is a diehard Caps fan and a hockey fanatic with a passion for sports writing. He attended his first game at age 8 and has been a season ticket holder since the 2010-2011 season. His fondest Caps memory was watching the Capitals hoist the Stanley Cup in Las Vegas. In his spare time, he enjoys travel, photography, and hanging out with his two dogs. Follow Harrison on Twitter @HarrisonB927077
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11 Responses to Capitals Sign Justin Schultz To Two-Year, $8 Million Contract

  1. Anonymous says:

    Not sure I get this reasoning behind this one….

  2. Scottlew73 says:

    Reasoning have you not followed this team & free agent signings for last 3 offseason’s? They never make sense wise or money wise! But as long as your owner keeps current GM employed you’ll keep seeing stupid decisions!

  3. Jack Hayes says:

    this looks like a really bad move. That -35 is atrocious for someone that just won back to back Cups in the city we hate

  4. Scottlew73 says:

    Thank you Jack,the”New World Order” stats may give this signing a thumbs up but as you said -35 speaks for it’s self! Schultz has had a short honeymoon in Edmonton also before he got ” run out” of organization. This team has now lost 20+ players from cup winning team in less than 3 seasons,not sure how GM can still tell owner that this is still top tier team with that level of player turnover .

    • Ryan says:

      Most of the negative +\- came from the early days in Edmonton… And then of course we all know that entire pens team was trash last year. I’m not saying he’s a godsend… I’m saying you’re jumping the gun and the signing has a lot of upside. Give him Orlov as a partner under Lavi and its quite possible we see the player from those cup years

      • Anonymous says:

        That was my thought exactly. He’ll have better talent around him and he fits Lavi’s system. Hopefully he shine and stay healthy. But definitely a risk.

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