He still wears the rings: 1974, the first and his favorite, on his left and 1975, the better-looking of the two, on his right. He’ll always wear the Stanley Cup rings. Dave Schultz is available through MCP speakers for corporate speaking engagements and as an emcee, and entertainer.
But Dave “The Hammer” Schultz—onetime baddest man in the NHL, public enemy No. 1 on the famed and feared Broad Street Bullies and owner of 2,294 career penalty minutes—has not played professional hockey for nearly a quarter century. He retired at the age of 30, unwanted by the NHL, a pugilist past his prime, an intimidated intimidator.
During his nine years in the National Hockey League, Dave Schultz was one of the most feared enforcers the game has ever known.
The man they called ‘The Hammer’ became a regular with the Philadelphia Flyers in the fall of 1972. Hockey had never seen anything like Schultz, who managed to terrorize the rest of the NHL. As a rookie in 1972-73 he led the league with 259 penalty minutes. Those totals increased in each of the next two seasons until he set the single-season record of 472 penalty minutes in 1974-75.
Schultz fought ferociously, pounding other teams’ tough guys into submission. Their willingness to employ goon tactics earned Schultz’s Flyers the nickname ‘Broad Street Bullies.’ But Schultz was more than just a fighter. He could also score goals, and he played a key role in helping the Flyers win Stanley Cup championships in 1974 and 1975.
Schultz was traded to the Los Angeles Kings for the 1976-77 season and was sent to Pittsburgh the following year. With the Kings and Penguins in 1977-78, he led the NHL in penalty minutes for the fourth and final time. His 405 penalty minutes that season made him the only player in NHL history to break the 400-minute mark twice.
Schultz finished his career with the Buffalo Sabres in 1980. In 535 NHL games, he tallied 79 goals, 121 assists and 2,294 penalty minutes. His single-season penalty-minutes record, which has stood for 24 years, is astronomical by today’s standards. He also holds the record for most penalty minutes in one playoff game, with 42 against the Toronto Maple Leafs on April 22, 1976. Going head to head with his archrival, Dave ‘Tiger’ Williams, Schultz picked up one minor penalty, two five-minute majors, a 10-minute misconduct and a double game misconduct. If you need a corporate entertainer who knows about the grit of competition and the inside of the NHL, look no further than Dave “The Hammer” Schultz.