According to a report from Sportsnet's John Shannon, Ottawa Senators forward Mike Hoffman has been traded to the San Jose Sharks. More on this story to come.
The Senators have now officially confirmed the news:
TRADE: The #Sens have acquired forward Mikkel Boedker, defenceman Julius Bergman and a sixth-round choice in the 2020 NHL Draft from the San Jose Sharks in exchange for Mike Hoffman, Cody Donaghy and Ottawa’s fifth-round pick in 2020:
Hoffman, of course, had been rumored to be on the move for months, but when allegations against him and his fiancee Monika Caryk from Senators captain Erik Karlsson and his wife Melinda Karlsson became public earlier this month, trade talks intensified. Caryk is alleged to have planned and executed an elaborate cyber-bullying and online harassment campaign against the Karlssons, which went to a whole new level following the stillborn birth of the Karlsson's first son Alex in March. Erik and Melinda were in Canadian court last month and had a "peace bond", essentially a restraining order, issued against Caryk as a result. Both Hoffman and Caryk have denied the allegations and have spoken out against the Karlsson's in an attempt to clear their name. Still... this trade seemed inevitable.
Hoffman will now join a Sharks team that is looking more and more loaded by the day. The team recently re-signed pending unrestricted free-agent Evander Kane and looks to be in the mix to acquire top free agents John Tavares and Ilya Kovalchuk, as well. Then there's still the matter of long-time Sharks forward Joe Thornton, as well. He's expected to re-sign with the team once general manager Doug Wilson is done making roster additions. The problem for Wilson now will be finding the requisite cap space to make all of his moves. The addition of Hoffman and his $5 million plus annual salary gives the Sharks roughly $6 million in cap space to use. Certainly enough to sign Kovalchuk, but not nearly enough to nab Tavares. It'll be interesting to see how Wilson and the Sharks navigate the free agents waters come July 1st, the opening day of NHL free agency.