This move was met with immediate shock. As Russo pointed out, the Wild locker room was in silence just minutes following their practice yesterday, as word got out that Schultz, the franchise leader in games played (743), had been moved. It was a move that you had to read multiple times, to make sure you are reading it correctly (As I did yesterday).
But, once the shock started to wear off, you see that this was a move that will almost surely help this hockey team. Gilbert is a solid puck moving defenseman, who will help add some offense to the blue line (Erik Karlsson of Ottawa is just 9 points behind the entire Wild defense in scoring this year. Karlsson has 65 points, the Wild defense has 74). He comes in for Schultz, who is a stay at home, play solid defense type of d-man, something the Oilers need very much.
As I mentioned before, Schultz was a leader on the club and one of the most respected guys in the locker room. But, as we all know, this is a part of the game. Its tough to say goodbye to someone who has played so well and for the same organization his entire career. But, as Chuck Fletcher told the media yesterday, "Its about adding different pieces for us moving forward." So basically what he is saying is that this is a pure hockey move.
And in the end, this move will be one that should benefit this hockey team in a big way...