Report: "Very Real Possibility" $13M Player Gets Waived By Canadiens

With six straight seasons averaging 28 goals from 2014 through 2020, it appeared that forward Mike Hoffman was a major offensive force in the NHL. It was no surprise, then, when the Montreal Canadiens signed him to a 3-year, $13.5M contract ($4.5M cap hit) as a 2021 free agent. 

But he hasn't come close to living up to expectations in his two seasons in Montreal, averaging just 14.5 goals and 34.5 points per campaign. Now, at the age of 33, his playing days with the Habs might be over. 

According to Insider Arpon Basu in The Athletic, the Canadiens could be ready to move on from Hoffman to open up some much-needed playing time for other, younger players. 

I think there’s a very real possibility he gets waived and assigned to Laval. Roster spots for young forwards are at a premium, and I don’t think Canadiens management is willing to allow a development opportunity pass them by with the slight hope that playing Hoffman could lead to a trade at the deadline.

Last season, Hoffman registered just 14 goals and 34 points playing about 15 minutes per game in a middle-six role. As Basu writes, "If Hoffman is not scoring, he’s not providing any value. And he hasn’t scored consistently in a Canadiens uniform."

Hoffman's peak was the 2018-19 season with the Florida Panthers, when he potted 36 goals and had 70 points. Going into his age-34 season, it appears Hoffman is clearly on the downside of his 12-year career, and just might be spending the coming season in the AHL, or with another NHL franchise. 

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