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Cameron Schilling is 23 years old. He is the oldest player at Caps Development Camp. With 11 games of AHL experience with the Hershey Bears, he has the most professional experience at camp. Schilling has 2 games of AHL playoff experience with 2 playoff goals under his belt. So why aren't the fans screaming his name and knocking over small children to get his autograph?
In a famous Nike commercial, baseball players Greg Maddux & Tom Glavine helped to popularize the phrase "Chicks dig the longball." Well in hockey, the saying would be "Chicks dig goals". For a young all-around NHL defenseman like Schilling, that means a lot of hard work being overlooked by offensive-minded fans.
During the week of scrimmages, Schilling showed why he earned minutes during last year's AHL playoffs. When he is on the ice, the other team has trouble getting shots on goal. Schilling not only sees the ice well, but he knows what position he needs to be in to disrupt an offensive scoring chance. And from what his 4 years at Miami (Ohio) show, he isn't afraid to disrupt a game with a penalty (155 career penalty minutes in college).
Despite the lack of popularity, Cameron's grit and grime do not go unnoticed by the coaches, management, or hardcore hockey fans. He can see the floor, and he is looking for trouble on the defensive end. Schilling will work on getting NHL ready next season at Hershey, but don't be surprised if before the season is over he is up with the big team at Verizon Center.