Mike Hoffman was signed to a professional tryout on December 27th, signaling to fans that the Blues understood that they were entering the new season with a hole in their offense. Without Vladimir Tarasenko, the Blues were missing elite goal scoring talent, and were also missing a key component to a productive power play.
The Blues’ new season officially begins Wednesday night in Colorado, so it was expected that Doug Armstrong would have Hoffman wrapped up in a contract facilitated by the absence of Alexander Steen’s salary by at least Tuesday. Armstrong beat assumptions by a day; the Blues have announced that Hoffman has been signed to a one year, $4 million contract.
Hoffman’s been penciled into potential lines since he arrived at camp, and it’s hard to deny that he makes St. Louis very strong up front. His deal puts the Blues right up against the salary cap with LTIR considered; when Tarasenko returns moves may have to be made. The salary cap is at $81.5 million; the Blues’ current hit, including LTIR, is at $88,550,515.