Ottawa Senators LW Mike Hoffman is starting to show his true colours after arbitration.
After his first full season in the NHL Mike Hoffman shined collecting 48 points and 27 goals. That year took him to the ending of his rookie contract with the Ottawa Senators which followed with arbitration.
It certainly didn’t go unnoticed when reports showed Hoffman entered the arbitration hearing requesting one year for $3.4 million and he left with a one year $2 million dollar contract. The general response from fans was that the Senators got away with one, signing a player with incredibly high value for such a small amount of dollar.
Yet, Hoffman shrugged it off. To him, it was understandable that the Senators had questions surrounding just how consistent he could be with just one full season of NHL experience under his belt.
“I know I’ve had one full year in the NHL and I still need to prove myself not only to myself but to everyone else — fans, coaching staff and everyone — that I am a legit player and not just a one-year guy.” – Mike Hoffman (NHL.com)
Coming into this year under the cloud of a one year contract, that is exactly what Mike Hoffman set out to do. And the road hasn’t been easy.
Even with his play this year, Dave Cameron has been back and forth on his coaching pet peeves that Hoffman needs to play better away from the puck. Although, Cameron seems to be coming around as of late.
And how could you not?
You had to wonder how long it was going to take for Cameron to realize that Hoffman is an offensive powerhouse that needs top 6 minutes alongside his better half, Mark Stone.
Now that more trust is being given to Hoffman, he is truly showing the Ottawa Senators that he is worth far more than the $2 million they signed him for.
He continued to impress Thursday night against the Chicago Blackhawks with two goals as well as his one-goal performance Saturday night against the Islanders.
After Saturday’s game against the New York Islanders, Hoffman has 26 points through 22 games and leads the team in goals with 14. His play so far this year has been everything the Senators have needed it to be, and more.
As the year to prove his worth continues, Hoffman is up for another interesting off season; one that could see him racking in big dollars as a top six forward.
Let’s just hope that the Ottawa Senators will be willing to cash out.