It appears that the Phoenix Coyotes and Shane Doan are in a race to get two different kinds of deals done before the aforementioned CBA expires. Doan wants to sign with an NHL club before the Sept. 15 expiration; the Coyotes want to sign him, but the team must be sold before that date if they want him to remain their captain.
The 35-year old winger has been on a tour of the Americas this offseason, enjoying free agency and evaluating his options. Now that the Minnesota Wild have signed both Zach Parise and Ryan Suter to 100-year deals, Doan is one of the top free agents left on the market. He has drawn interest from several NHL clubs, including the Buffalo Sabres, who reportedly have offered him a 4-year, $30M deal.
Unfortunately for Buffalo, Doan had made it clear that he wouldn’t sign with any NHL club until the Coyotes’ in-flux ownership situation was resolved; now that pact may have changed.
“Shane is going to sign a contract before the CBA expires on the 15th,” Doan’s agent, Terry Bross said. “(Ownership has to) be done before the 15th, otherwise we’re signing somewhere else because we don’t know what the new CBA is going to look like, and I don’t know if it’s going to limit the scope of any contract, so we want to make sure we sign him before then. In that respect, time is ticking.”
Former Sharks owner Greg Jamison is the frontrunner to buy the Coyotes. His ultimate goal? Purchasing the franchise under the right circumstances, and keeping it in Phoenix. It would be nice for the Coyotes to keep Doan in the process, but ultimately that shouldn’t be of consequence. The state of the franchise is the most important thing in Phoenix, and Doan’s free agency decision will ultimately have little impact on the franchise’s bigger picture.
Where do the Sharks fit in?
The Sharks are one of several different teams that have expressed interest in Doan. Among the other teams are the Philadelphia Flyers, New York Rangers, Montreal Canadiens, Detroit Red Wings, Nashville Predators, Pittsburgh Penguins, Vancouver Canucks and, of course, the Buffalo Sabres.
Not everybody thinks that San Jose is a good landing spot for him; Sam Rosen of NHL.com, for example, has a list of the five teams that Doan should consider, with San Jose absent from the list. TSN has reported that Doan is looking for a contract in the $30M range – a price tag far too high for the Sharks’ salary cap.
But Yahoo!’s Greg Wyshynski, AKA Puck Daddy, believes that the Sharks are still a contender to land Doan if things in the desert aren’t ironed out soon. And even if he doesn’t end up in teal, there are still several teams on that list that represent significant Cup competition, including the Coyotes, Red Wings, Predators and Canucks. That definitely makes this situation something to monitor.
Unless, of course, you’re like me, and you’re starting to believe that the Sharks’ biggest Cup competition is … the Sharks.
CBA Update: Commissioner Gary Bettman and the NHL owners presented a proposal for the Donald Fehr and the NHLPA to look over Tuesday. Bettman described yesterday’s talks as “significant and had meaningful movement.”
Details of the proposal revealed that it plans to reduce the players’ revenue sharing gradually over the course of the next several years.
According Pro Hockey Talk, “the new proposal is a six-year deal that would lower the players’ share of revenues to 51.6% in 2012-13, 50.5% in 2013-14, and provide the players with a 50-50 split for the final three seasons.”
Another result of the proposal – the salary cap would be lowered to $58M in 2012-13, meaning that the Sharks will be $7.2M over with their current roster, according to CapGeek.
The NHLPA is looking over the proposal now and is expected to respond within the next few days.