Thursday, March 28, 2013

Hoffman Returns To The Show

Mike Hoffman became the fourth former Saint John Sea Dog to skate in a NHL game this season.

Hoffman played just over 14 minutes for the Ottawa Senators on Thursday, helping them defeat the New York Rangers 3-0. Hoffman, wearing No. 68, was held pointless but did record two shots and two hits.

A fifth-round pick of the Sens in 2009, Hoffman has played in 41 games with the American Hockey League’s Binghamton Senators this season. He’s registered 13 goals and 15 assists. He would have seen action with the NHL club earlier this season but missed time with a collarbone injury.

“His total game has grown since he has played in the American Hockey League,” said Senators coach Paul MacLean to the Ottawa Citizen. “During the training camp we had in January, he played really well, he really showed us that he was ready to play. It’s unfortunate that the injury he got came at the same time as all the other injuries we had, so he basically missed out on the opportunity that maybe others had, and took advantage of. We felt he has earned the opportunity to come in and show us if he can play.”

Hoffman joins Simon Despres, Jonathan Huberdeau, and Charlie Coyle as former Sea Dogs to appear in NHL games this season. Hoffman, Despres, and Huberdeau all played on the 2009-10 Saint John team that made it to the President’s Cup final.

Huberdeau ended a lengthy goalless drought Thursday as the Florida Panthers edged the Buffalo Sabres 5-4 in a shootout. Huberdeau had the game-tying goal, a shootout goal, an assist, three shots, and one hit in 16:15 of ice time.

The 19-year old, who hadn’t scored since March 8 entering action this evening, has 13 goals and 10 assists in 35 games this season with the Panthers. Puck Daddy had an article this week on his recent offensive struggles.

Despres was also in action tonight, helping the Pittsburgh Penguins win a 14th straight game with a 4-0 win over the Winnipeg Jets. The defenseman had one shot and two hits in 16:46 of ice time.

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