Belfast Telegraph

Ice Hockey: Hoffman packs a punch for Belfast Giants

By Stuart McKinley

Belfast Giants coach Doug Christiansen has completed his roster with a double-signing two weeks ahead of his first game in charge of the club.

And his final piece of the jigsaw is the man he hopes will fill seats at the Odyssey as the Giants go about wrestling the Elite League title away from Coventry Blaze.

Defenceman Mike Hoffman will fill the void left by Sean McMorrow’s departure and his record as a fighter makes him a man not to be messed with.

“Mike Hoffman is a true heavy weight fighter, however, he can do much more than just play tough,” said Christinsen.

“I did not want to add a one dimensional tough guy. Mike gives us a lot of flexibility. He will start on defense for us and move to forward if we need some power up front.”

Hoffman has fought McMorrow earlier in his career and he will hope to enjoy the same cult status as the man who carried the nickname of the Sheriff while in Belfast.

He will be joined by Mike Bayrack, as all the imports slots are now filled. He is a winger who will be expected to chip in with points and goals in a season of high expectation at the Odyssey following last season’s Play-off triumph.

“Mike Bayrack has been one of the top players in the ECHL,” said Christiansen.

“In order to accomplish our goals, we needed one more offensive player and Mike is it. He is a point-a-game player and has the ability to have a phenomenal season.

“Mike will start on the wing, but he gives us another centre if needed.”

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