Only one player on the Arizona Coyotes can boast that he has been around since before the Coyotes were in Phoenix- and he’s still the team captain. Shane Doan, who signed with the original Winnipeg Jets, has been leading his team across cities, countries, and skating arenas- literally- for years.
If you’re a Coyotes fan, chances are this is old news. The 37-year-old right winger is practically the face of the team; in addition to being the only remaining player to have moved from Winnipeg to Phoenix, he is one of only two members of the original Jets franchise to still be active in the NHL.
Despite his success internationally, Doan has stuck with the Coyotes through the ups and the downs that the franchise has faced. He was there to see the team hit an all-time low in 2006-07, when the team only posted 36 wins- but he was also there in 2011-12, when the team won it’s first-ever division title. He stuck it out through the team’s stadium relocation in 2003 to the Jobing.Com Arena, and the resale controversy and bankruptcy of 2009.
Through it all, though, Doan has been quietly amassing a spectacular career. To date, he has skated in a franchise high 1,315 games. He has scored 354 goals, and made 508 assists. He has only received one suspension, for an illegal blindside hit to the head on Ducks winger Dan Sexton, and has led his team to three playoff runs since assuming captaincy in 2003. Who is he, though?
In a one-on-one interview with The Hockey Writers’ Dan Rice, Doan was well-spoken and humble. He’s the kind of guy who understands how special it is to have “grown up” with a single organization, and has a special connection to the team. He wants to win for more than just himself.
Doan has held his own over the years, though, and that doesn’t come just from playing nice with others. The Alberta native has been known to deliver some monstrous hits- for anyone who doesn’t love the L.A. Kings, I give you my personal favorite-
When he’s not playing hockey, the powerful right wing is quite the family man, as well. He and his wife, Andrea, have four children- Gracie, Josh, Karys, and Carson. He’s also one of the more religious players in the NHL- every stick he’s used has had Romans 8:28 written on his stick. The verse, which reads ” and we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to his purpose”, is a way of saying that God works in all things. Doan got his devout love of religion from his parents, who ran a bible camp in Halkirk, Alberta.
Doan has yet to win a Stanley Cup with Arizona, but he remains hopeful. Last year’s devastating elimination from a playoff spot came after a winning streak that had the Coyotes briefly ousting the Dallas Stars from their playoff spot. It’ll be interesting to see if the team can manage a Cup before their long-standing captain retires; that is, if he doesn’t pull a Jagr and continue to play until he’s ninety.