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From The Editor’s Desk: Shane Doan’s Choice

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It’s the time of year where Shane Doan must decide if he is going to keep playing, or hang up the skates as an NHLer.

Minnesota Wild v Arizona Coyotes
Captain Coyote
Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Some interesting tweets came out from John Gambadoro of ArizonaSports.com and it’s parent radio station about Shane Doan.

Most people who are not valley natives would brush this off, but what you out of towners don’t know is that Gambo is a good source when it comes to Shane Doan. Doan has been working with (and making fun of) him since about 1996.

With a decision coming in 10-14 days, that puts you right at the Vegas Expansion Draft or right after the NHL Entry Draft. Very interesting timing.

But it’s not odd to time it that way. Doan would want to see how the Coyotes handle the expansion draft first, see who from the team would be heading out. After the entry draft too would give him an idea of how the team is going to move forward, and allow him to see what sort of trades would play out as well.

As I mentioned in his player grade for this year, he struggled for a lot of the season. Yes, the team was not very good, but his production went down greatly from the year before. With the team about to turn over to a new page of Coyotes history, now with a single owner, what will the Captain choose?

Play?

If Doan wants and feels as if he can play again and keep up with the young players, he should come back and know that his playing time and role will most likely be less than the years before. He is still effective on the power play, stationed in front of the goalie, and has won some pretty important face-offs as well.

The downside is his foot speed is slowing down and sometimes he isn’t as sharp as he used to me. His style of play is also not used as much anymore in the new NHL.

Retire?

20 seasons of playing hockey is a long time. 20 seasons with the same franchise is unheard of anymore. Shane Doan is something special when it comes to the sort of loyalty to a franchise and the city it is in. Choosing to retire from any job is hard. Retiring from something that has been all you’ve known in your working career is even harder.

Doan would most likely be given a job with the team very quickly, if that’s what he wanted to do. He is a noted rink rat who hangs around watching hockey in any capacity. He will always be around the Coyotes, if he stays in the Valley, and most likely will because of his children who grew up here.

Watching Doan retire would hurt, but as the tides churn around the Coyotes and their future, it may be time to hand the reigns over to someone who is ready for the captaincy. The passing of the torch will be something that Coyotes fans both do and don’t want to see.

I would love for Shane Doan to keep playing and playing like the seemingly ageless Jaromir Jagr, but I think it is safe to say we may have seen the last of our Captain Coyote.

We shouldn’t be sad, but we should accept that we are heading into a new era of Arizona Coyotes hockey.