It has taken one of the league’s most coveted free agents all summer to decide on his future, but he has finally come to a decision. The current captain of the Phoenix Coyotes has decided to remain with the club by signing a 4 year, $21.2M contract that also included a $2M signing bonus.
Doan received many offers this summer including the New York Rangers, Toronto Maple Leafs, and Vancouver Canucks just to name a few teams. Money wasn’t an issue, but rather an issue of where he wanted to spend the next few years living and playing hockey. These many options took a lot of time to carefully go over. The Coyotes poor financial situation where they may be heading to bankruptcy or be sold had a lot to do with this too.
But in the end, Doan decided to remain loyal to his team and resign in Phoenix. He said, “I’m extremely excited about remaining a Coyote. I was drafted by this organization and it means a great deal to me to be able to play with the same franchise my entire career.”
There is no doubt Doan is a very talented player. He can be counted on to provide at least 50 points every season. But, Doan’s presence is felt more than just on the score sheet. As a 17 year NHL veteran and current captain, Doan has a very strong voice inside the locker room. He is one of the most respected players both on and off the ice by all teammates, opponents, and officials. The younger players on the team look up to him to set a good example for work habits and level of play.
The Coyotes GM Don Maloney spoke on finally signing Doan to a new contract. He said, “We are thrilled to sign Shane to a long-term contract. Shane is our captain and the heart and soul of our franchise. He is the consummate professional and one of the best leaders in the NHL. His loyalty, commitment, integrity and passion for the game epitomize everything you’d want in a player. It was a priority for us to sign him to a long-term deal so that he can play for the Coyotes for the remainder of his career.”
Though they are near bankruptcy, the Coyotes made it to the Western Conference Finals last season before losing to the eventual Stanley Cup Champions Los Angeles Kings. Goaltender Mike Smith emerged as a strong starter after he had a stand out year. Martin Hanzal, recently acquired Antoine Vermette, and Keith Yandle also played a big part in the team’s success. With Doan back in the mix, they should be able to compete and make a deep run in the playoffs this upcoming season.
Hopefully Doan’s loyalty to the team will encourage fans to do the same and support the team so they won’t have to transfer to Quebec or Seattle.
More to Come..
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