Things change fast in the world of sports. With Mike Hoffman sent to the San Jose Sharks out of Ottawa this morning, it didn’t take long for his new digs to become his old digs. The Sharks flipped Hoffman to the Florida Panthers, sending him back to the Eastern Conference and back into the purview of Erik Karlsson and the Senators.

As we detailed Tuesday morning, the Senators initially swapped Hoffman to the Sharks for winger Mikkel Boedker, defenceman Julius Bergman and a 2020 sixth-round pick. Defenceman Cody Donaghey and a 2020 fifth-round selection were also sent to the San Jose.

The Sharks subsequently traded Hoffman to Florida for a bundle of draft picks, including a 2019 second-round pick and fourth- and fifth-round selections in this year’s draft. San Jose also included a draft pick along with Hoffman.

This latest turn in the lathered saga means that Hoffman is not out safe in the Western Conference, where Karlsson and the Senators won’t encounter him often.

No, Hoffman now resides in the Eastern Conference – and indeed in the Atlantic Division, right along with his former club.

With Hoffman’s fiancé suspected of harassing Karlsson’s wife on social media, this twist could come to fruition on the ice in stunning fashion when the divisional rivals tangle.

Panthers general manager Dale Tallon didn’t seem rattled by the notion that Hoffman’s fiancé could be found guilty of harassing Karlsson’s wife, which would make things awkward on and off the ice. Professionalism is theoretically the order of the day but imagining there’d be no ill will between the two players when they meet is a little like assuming there’ll be no livid comments on a hockey blog.

For the record, the Karlssons are currently protected via peace bond from Hoffman’s fiancé Monika Caryk. Ottawa police are conducting an active investigation into the harassment allegations. This may or may not result in the insinuation of Hoffman as conversant of the activity, though the forward has already denied it along with Caryk.

A lot is riding on how this plays out and it looks like the Sharks know that. While some hockey press consider Hoffman radioactive because of these accusations, the Panthers were obviously comfortable enough taking the risk. For now. If charges are attached, it’ll be a whole new ballgame in the Sunshine State.

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