Shane Doan (Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images)
The talented right winger returns for an incredible 21st season with the franchise, stretching back to the team's days in Winnipeg. He'll captain a squad flush with young players who can still soak up some of his guidance.
There was really only one way this was going to end up. Shane Doan, the captain of the Coyotes, is returning to Arizona for at least one more season thanks to a new contract worth $5 million.
Doan's base salary is $2.5 million, with more in deferred bonuses and incentives, according to beat writer Craig Morgan. The heavy right winger turns 40 this autumn, but he still led the Coyotes in goal-scoring with 28 last season. He also finished third in team offense with 47 points in 72 games.
But Doan's impact on the team goes beyond numbers. The captain has been a rock for a franchise that has gone through the ringer since it left Winnipeg and with many bright young stars coming up, Doan is a perfect role model. And he makes sure to get players in the fold right away, as he did with 2015 lottery pick Dylan Strome last year at training camp.
"He’s a world-class player and a world-class guy," Strome told me. "He told me when I left that if I needed anything – tickets to any game or if I had any problems whatsoever – to give him a call or a text.”
Strome will make a big push to play for the big squad in 2016-17, where he will join young guns Max Domi and Anthony Duclair. That pairing has already made an impact at the NHL level and with veterans such as Alex Goligoski and Jamie McGinn joining up, Doan and star defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson will have reinforcements in the leadership department.
Not that Doan needs it; he is widely respected around the league and very involved in the community. But if he can maintain his offensive clip while the young kids take over as Arizona's primary attackers, perhaps Doan will see another post-season in the desert.