It’s been a whirlwind week or so in the NHL, but now that the dust has settled, let’s take a look at something that might polarise fans of the Arizona Coyotes.
Last week was the eventful NHL draft lottery, where everyone was excited to finally know which team would be gifted Alexis Lafreniere with this year’s first overall pick.
The lottery came and went and we are still waiting to find out which team that will be thanks to a placeholder team getting the winning call, meaning a SECOND lottery round will be needed once the play-ins are completed.
But that’s not what we’re discussing today, because a few days before the lottery was the day that we discovered who would be named to the coveted Hockey Hall of Fame this year.
Of course, there was the unsurprising choice, with Jarome Iginla getting in at the first opportunity, but there were other surprises that many fans have debated heavily on social media - namely about six-time Stanley Cup Champion and seven-time NHL All-Star Kevin Lowe’s induction.
There was one player that some mentioned on social media, with heavily differing views as to whether or not he would be worthy of entering the hall.
Well here at Five For Howling, we are an Arizona Coyotes site and if we didn’t make our case for the synonymous with the team, then what are we doing?
That player, of course, is the legendary #19 Shane Doan.
Doan played his entire career with the ‘Coyotes’ franchise, with his first professional season coming in the original Winnipeg Jets’ final year before the move to the desert.
The Halkirk, Alberta native never looked back after the move, playing right up until 2017, when he ultimately decided to retire from the game when the team opted not to bring him back for another campaign.
The less said about Doan’s departure the better, so let’s focus on what truly matters - his playing career and the impact he has had on the game in Arizona.
Many players get into the hall because they put up the biggest numbers, breaking scoring records and winning individual trophies left, right and center.
While Doan put up a lot of points in the NHL, he doesn’t quite fit into that all-conquering category, but he does have an astonishing 1540 regular-season games under his belt.
In those games, Doan scored 402 goals and added a further 570 assists, totaling 972 points - all of which are franchise records that will take many many years to eclipse.
When combining his playoff stats (49GP: 15G-13A), Doan totaled 1000 combined points in his career with the Jets 1.0/Coyotes.
He had success on the international stage, with two World Championship gold medals with Team Canada, along with three silver medals in the same competition and a gold medal in the World Cup of Hockey in 2003/04.
Three of those consecutive medal-winning campaigns in the World Championship also saw Doan named captain of the Canadian team, a huge honor that very few players have had.
But that is exactly what Doan has been throughout his long career: a true leader that has been a consummate professional and led by example every time he stepped onto the ice, and even off of it.
He made a huge impact on the community in Arizona, working hard to help build the game and working with several charities during his time as the captain of the Coyotes.
His work in the community and the strong leadership character he has demonstrated were both rewarded with end-of-season individual awards.
At the end of the 2009/10 season, Doan was awarded the King Clancy Trophy - awarded to players that best exemplify leadership qualities on and off the ice, making significant humanitarian contributions to their community.
After the 2011/12 season, the last time the Coyotes made the post-season, he was awarded the Mark Messier Leadership Award, which is largely similar to the King Clancy, being an exemplary leader and community ambassador.
Many players go through their careers putting up exceptional numbers and winning trophies, but not as many can say they have had the impact on a community as Doan has.
He has been the face of the franchise through thick and thin, representing them wherever he has gone and is one of the few players in the modern era to play his entire career with one franchise, even with the relocation after his rookie campaign.
He has owned the Kamloops Blazers WHL franchise since 2007, investing heavily in junior hockey through the team he once played for, while also stepping into hockey operations roles since hanging up his skates.
Doan’s impact on hockey continues to this day, having worked as a team consultant for Team Canada’s World Championships silver-medal winning team in 2018/19 while becoming assistant general manager of the team during their Spengler Cup success earlier this season.
He continues to work closely with the league and is well respected by many around the sport.
He has been a model professional, made a significant contribution to growing hockey in the desert, owns many franchise records, and had success on a personal and international level.
While some people may not view him as a traditional Hall of Famer, he certainly stacks up better than many that have earned a spot and should see his name called into the hall in the near future.