After a busy first week of NHL free agency there are still plenty of quality players available. Case in point, 30-year-old left winger Mike Hoffman. After spending the last two years in Florida, the Kitchener native is dealing with the free agent market at a peculiar time.
What an NHL Team is Getting in Hoffman
Hoffman, rightly or wrongly, has been labelled as a goal scorer. His numbers somewhat confirm that sentiment – during his first six full NHL seasons he has twice tallied more goals than assists (27 goals/21 assists with Ottawa in 14/15, 36 goals/34 assists with Florida in 18/19). Most importantly for NHL teams bidding on Hoffman he has proven to be consistently productive.
As a full-time NHL player Hoffman has only failed to reach the 50-point mark once – his first season in Ottawa during the 14/15 season. Further, Hoffman is coming off two solid years with the Florida Panthers where he had a career best season in 18/19. He was also on a decent pace in 2020 with 59 points (29g, 30a) in 69 games before the season was cut short.
All in all, the NHL team that lands Hoffman will be getting a winger that can plug into near any top-6 unit within the league.
Hoffman in Boston?
A clearly valuable player, Hoffman has been linked to several different teams from New Jersey to Nashville to Calgary to Columbus and back to Florida. However, the most recent front runner appears to be the Boston Bruins.
Without even considering the potential loss of Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak to start the 20/21 season, Boston still needs some offensive help within their top-six forward group. Realistically and bluntly, if the Bruins do sign Hoffman then that would likely mean the end of Jake Debrusk’s days in Boston.
With $11 million in cap space, the Bruins still need funds for Matt Grzelcyk and long-time captain Zdeno Chara. Hoffman will likely need at least $6 million on a short-term contract, and that would leave next to zero room for any kind of deal with Debrusk who is now an RFA.
Will the Bruins add a more proven scorer in Hoffman to play the left side with Krejci? Further, are they ready to completely abandon the best of their three 2015 first round picks in Jake Debrusk? Stay tuned as Hoffman will likely be snapped up soon!
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