Sharks general manager Doug Wilson got an early start to his morning on Tuesday, making a pair of deals before most of the team's fans had woken up.
To recap: San Jose acquired winger Mike Hoffman, a pick, and a prospect from the Ottawa Senators in exchange for a package centered around struggling forward Mikkel Boedker. Ottawa announced that deal at 4:58 a.m. PT. The Sharks then flipped Hoffman and a pick to the Florida Panthers for a trio of draft selections, a trade that Florida officially announced at 7:17 a.m. PT.
Here's what each team acquired after the dust settled:
- Defenseman Cody Donaghey (from Senators)
- 2020 fifth-round pick (from Senators)
- 2018 fourth-round pick (from Panthers)
- 2018 fifth-round pick (from Panthers)
- 2019 second-round pick (from Panthers)
Senators get (from Sharks):
- Forward Mikkel Boedker
- Defenseman Julis Bergman
- 2020 sixth-round pick
Panthers get (from Sharks):
- Forward Mike Hoffman
- 2018 seventh-round pick
So what does it all mean for the Sharks? Perhaps most importantly, trading Boedker's contract, who was just seeming to find his place in the lineup down the stretch this season after signing a four-year deal with the team two summers ago, clears an additional $4 million in salary cap space over the next two seasons (and $6 million in total salary). With the cap set to rise to between $78 million and $82 million, San Jose would (as of now) have between $14.5 million and $18.5 million in cap space, and that's before considering the possibility that the team buys out Paul Martin's contract.
Even if no other moves are made, the Sharks are in position to make a splash in free agency. According to The Sporting News' Evan Sporer, their maneuvering is designed to chase not one, but two of the biggest free-agent fish this summer.
In his statement announcing the trades, Wilson said the deals "free up a substantial amount of cap space for internal and external player options in the coming months," and re-stocked on draft picks. It was a tidy bit of trading, as San Jose improved upon each of the selections it traded away, and now has seven picks in this year's draft after entering the day with just five.
He also said that the deal opens a spot for the young forwards in the organization to challenge for ice time. Wilson specifically mentioned Kevin Labanc (who actually averaged more ice time than Boedker this season), playoff hero Marcus Sorensen, newly-signed European free agents Antti Suomela and Vincent Praplan, as well as rookies Dylan Gambrell and Max Letunov.
Meanwhile, Hoffman joined Theo Fleury and Mark Messier in the "Sharks For A Few Hours" club, and has a new home following accusations that his girlfriend, Monica Caryk, harassed a teammate's wife. Last week, the Ottawa Citizen reported that Melinda Karlsson, wife of Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson, had filed for an order of protection against Hoffman's girlfriend and accused her of an online harassment campaign throughout the season.
As a result, Hoffman's trade value plummeted from where it was at the trade deadline, according to ESPN's Greg Wyshynski.
Pierre LeBrun told TSN that the trade was not a three-way deal, as the Sharks and Senators reportedly did not communicate about the subsequent trade with the Panthers. Wilson's no stranger to creatively facilitating some of the offseason's biggest deals, however. He acquired a pair of players and a pick from the Atlanta Thrashers in 2010 so Atlanta could acquire Dustin Byfuglien from then-Stanley Cup champions Chicago, and he also acquired goaltender Martin Jones from the Boston Bruins three years ago just days after the Los Angeles Kings shipped him (and a first-round pick) up to Boston for Milan Lucic.