DETROIT – The Wings better hope this isn’t a sign of how free agency is going to go once it opens at noon on Sunday.
One of the prized unrestricted free agents, defenseman Justin Schultz, has crossed Detroit off his list of teams he will be play for next season.
“I don’t know if we were ever in it,” Wings general manager Ken Holland said in a phone interview Wednesday. “He became officially free on Monday. We expressed to his agents we have interest in signing him. Don Meehan expressed to me that he would go through the process.
“(Meehan) informed me today we are not one of the teams on his list he wants to sign with,” Holland ended.
Schultz, who turns 22 on July 6, was drafted by Anaheim in 2008, 43rd overall, but couldn’t reach a deal with the Ducks, who had until Sunday before he could begin talks on a contract with any other team.
Money wasn’t an issue because all Schultz is eligible for is a two-year deal, at the entry-level maximum, which includes a $925,000 base salary, a $92,500 signing bonus and $2.85 million in performance bonuses for a cap hit $3.775 million.
Schultz is a two-time Hobey Baker finalist and WCHA defensive player of the year. He totaled 40 goals and 73 assists in 121 games over three seasons with the Badgers.
Schultz (6-2, 185 pounds) is a highly skilled offensive defenseman that analysts say has good hockey sense. He’s a good skater, has the ability to move the puck and has a tremendous shot.
Schultz is also a right-handed shot.