The Rangers’ new top priority free agent target may have just emerged

June 27, 2012, by

Though we suggested Shane Doan as a possible free agent target for the Rangers, no one really believed the team had a shot at signing him.

That’s because the consensus for months, even years, was that Doan was a life-long Coyote, solely loyal to the Phoenix/Winnipeg squad that originally drafted him back in 1995.

But in a surprising turn of events, Phoenix GM Don Maloney admitted this evening that Doan will indeed test free agency on July 1st.

Doan really has no choice.  Phoenix’s ownership situation is still as uncertain as ever and there’s still a reasonable possibility that the Coyotes will leave Phoenix in the very near future.  Doan, at 35-years-old, knows that this will likely be the final contract of his NHL career and he understandably wants to know that his team is on solid ground and where his family will be living 12 months from now.

So the Coyotes’ eight-year captain has evidently made it known that with these issues still facing his current employer, he’s going to at least consider leaving the only team he has ever played for.

Doan’s age is concerning to some, but he still has plenty left in the tank and would be a great fit for the Rangers.  Doan plays far younger than his age and still plays with enthusiasm and energy in addition to being a bull and a solid offensive contributor.

New York will almost certainly pursue Doan, but so will many other clubs.  It’s unlikely that money will be a major object – the Rangers are desperate for offense and would be willing to outbid other teams, assuming the price stays in a reasonable $3 million to $4.5 million range annually.  The bigger point of contention will be over the length of the contract.

Doan’s actions are an obvious indication that he desires security over all else, meaning a one-year deal won’t get this done.  Two years is probably as far as most teams would prefer to go, but the eventual winner of his services may have to add an additional third or even fourth year to its offer.  Whether GM Glen Sather will be willing to do that or not could determine if he lands the 11-time 20-goal scorer or not.


Don’t discount the possibility that Maloney’s public comment on Doan’s potential departure was a bit of a negotiating tactic, designed to play on the loyalty of his captain who is now surely being forced to answer all kinds of questions about his devotion to his team.

That’s of course ridiculous, because it’s common knowledge that if the Coyotes were simply able to straighten out their issues, Doan would have re-upped long ago and would at the very least be finalizing a new contract by now.

But neither Maloney nor Doan ever thought it would come to this and Maloney is now desperately trying to retain his captain and one of the few mildly marketable stars the Coyotes have left.



  1. Adrian says:

    I would offer him 3.5 for 3 years, that’s a generous amount an I think he’d really fit in nicely.

    • Blueshirt in Paris says:

      Too generous. We are not a soup kitchen. He will probably looking for a 4yr deal at my guess of 4mil per.

      I would do a 2yrs 3mil but even that is a tad rich for a 3rd line player.

  2. ranger17 says:

    Would he fall into that 35 and over quaranty contract. Count against the cap until he retires

  3. TommyT says:

    I agree with Ranger17 as much as i like Doan and would fit great, the length of the contract becomes an issue with it being 35 n older. Unless he does the classy thing like Naslund and retire so we are not on the hook for his contract.

    • mattstake says:

      yea, just look at how well arod is working out for the yanks right about now. don’t sign him.

    • Chris says:

      Doan is an over 35 player so even if he retires, his contract remains on the cap. The classy move Naslund made a few years ago would not come into play with Doan, assuming he signs a multi-year deal.

      If the rule doesn’t change in the new CBA, there is no way to get out from the contract. Buyouts and/or retirement (even a retirement due to injury) would not remove the cap hit. I would still sign him, but understand that there is an added element of risk with signing Shame Doan.

  4. Walt says:

    Doan has been very good for the dogs over his career, but at this stage I wouldn’t want to commit to any contract for more than a year, no matter what his past has been. Ranger17 made a good point, and if Doan wants security, why would he retire after lets say two years, while he can get the third free? We may be forced to buy him out, and take the cap hit, who needs that?

  5. Rob sahm says:

    It looks like these are the type of players that are on sathers target unless a miracle happens with nash. I like doan he would be a good 2nd line player with richards I would vive him 2 year contract no more then that

  6. Jeff P says:

    Doan is a valuable piece of the puzzle. As I wrote on that thread, I’d take him in an instant. However: he’s on the downside of his career, his production having steadily decreased for the last 3 years. He made $4.5m last year. I’d sign him for 2/$8m or 3/$11m, but I think he can get 3-4 years at $4-$5m from someone in today’s NHL.

  7. Mike says:

    I don’t like it. This is a move the old rangers would make, going after an old man with his prime behind him..

    • SalMerc says:

      I agree. Old players, high salary – Instant gratification got us in a hole that we are finally digging out of.

  8. Sioux-per-man says:

    He played with an edge against the Rangers, just ask Cally. He already plays like a Ranger. I would sign him. Don’t have to trade any of the core players or a top prospect, and he brings in veteran leadership.

    Plus, he gets a chance to play on a team that will be a contender. I would think this would be win/win for both parties involved. Like Sather said about Parise, we only have to part with money.

    I see this deal happening befor Nash and Parise.

    It would be a good Get for this team, especially with Gaborik out the first half of the season.

  9. Kevin Baumer says:

    I think Rangers fans have understandably been scared off by age numbers, rather than evaluating where the player is at in this stage of his career. Doan is still a very solid producer and if you didn’t know he was 35, you’d probably guess he was in his early 30s. I see no reason why he can’t be an effective player for at least a couple more seasons. I’d prefer a 2-year deal, but I’d be comfortable with 3 seasons.

  10. michael says:

    Ghosts of Rangers past says old players are a bad deal for this team but Doan strikes me as an exception not the rule. He plays with an edge to his game. That edge is the core of this Rangers group. If I’m Sather 3y/$9-10.5M is fair for everyone.

  11. mbeamer says:

    I’d pass on Doan – too old. We want youth. The player we should be holding our breath for is Evander Kane. If he is unsigned on July 1st he should be the number one priority.

  12. Ben says:

    Jagr didn’t seem to do us any wonders but fast forward a few seasons, and an OLDER Jagr played spectacular with Giroux and Hartnell ……..I think it’s a gamble …..but id go for 3yr 12mil!