It’s been a good opening month of hockey for Justin Schultz. A rookie defenseman with a high velocity scoring habit has done things few, if any, have done in their first month in the AHL. It was announced today that he was the Player of the Month for the entire league. Close behind was Mikael Granlund, of the Houston Aeros, who earned the Rookie of the Month award. How a player can be a rookie, win the player of the month, and NOT win the rookie of the month is kinda weird. But it’s an everyone-wins-no-consolation-prize world.
The league’s announcement:
Making his professional debut, Schultz found the scoresheet in each of his seven games played during October, totaling six goals and six assists for a league-leading 12 points for the Barons.
After notching an assist in his first game on Oct. 12 at Lake Erie, Schultz scored the game-winning goal in Oklahoma City’s 3-2 victory over the Monsters the next day. In his next outing, a 5-2 win over San Antonio on Oct. 19, Schultz scored two shorthanded goals, assisted on the game-winner and notched a plus-5 rating, earning first-star honors for the game. Schultz finished the month with three consecutive two-point performances, dishing out two assists each on Oct. 23 vs. Lake Erie and Oct. 26 vs. Houston and then scoring a pair of power-play goals in a 4-2 win over Texas on Oct. 28.