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Fine, Let's Talk About Shane Doan

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Ignore the guy in blue, focus on the other one. (Photo by Rich Lam/Getty Images)
Ignore the guy in blue, focus on the other one. (Photo by Rich Lam/Getty Images)
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Luongo's still here? Check.

The defense is pretty much set? Check.

All quiet on the RFA front check? Check.

Weber hasn't been acquired yet? Check.

Alrighty, let's chat about Shane Doan while we wait.

How we got here: despite Phoenix's run to the Conference Finals in the spring, there remains plenty of financial ambiguity on whether the team can root down in Glendale for the foreseeable future. The key date should have been July 9th when a petition had to be delivered to authorities in hopes of getting a referendum on the November ballots regarding the team's lease agreement. The group behind the petition plans on getting the paperwork filed on July 16th which - coincidentally or not - is part of Shane Doan's current timeline as expressed by his agent Terry Bross:

"I would say if we don't have an answer by the 16th (of July) it may be time to get serious about listening to other teams' offers"

It's been suggested Doan has whittled his list to maybe six teams and we already know Vancouver is one of them. According to sports radio out of Phoenix is that the current Cup holders already put an offer down and that was followed by the Sharks. The whispers are that Doan - who will be 36 at the start of next season - is looking for a 4-5 year deal north of $5 million per.

Does Doan make sense on a team whose GM has claimed to be steering the team towards the "younger, bigger and stronger" side of hockey? If we ignore the money/term of his new deal along with his baggage and potential of injury, then yes he does. Doan plays RW and shoots right which in Vancouver is about as common as a sensibly priced downtown condo. In the past 12 seasons he's shown remarkable consistency, scoring less than 20 goals and less than 50 points only once. It would fit the "bigger" component Gillis is aiming for and, as some suggested, may not be a bad influence to have around a budding Kassian and some of the prospects. In fact this line of reasoning is the best way to ignore his age: focus on those intangibles that are hard if not impossible to quantify but - if you listen to critics - are always seemingly missing from Vancouver, like "grit", "hits" and "leadership."

Personally I love the idea of Doan because the Canucks are essentially built to Vigneault's maddening tinkering: a coach who will exploit every second of zone coverage and opposition weakness that he can with all four lines. Adding Doan as a right handed shot into Vigneault's strategy is a huge nightly bonus.

Oh, and while we're at it, people already hate him and his antics so he'll fit in just fine. We are still embracing the hate no?

Now let's pull the money/term back into the equation. Doan should be swinging for the fences as a 35+ in what is probably his last big UFA splash. Someone will give it to him, but should Vancouver commit that kind of coin? A short term deal would work but Vancouver shouldn't get into a bidding war, especially as their most ardent supporters remain fixated on the idea of a Versteeg coming in for Luongo or a Weber coming in for who knows what. Add into the mix that Edler and Burrows in addition to Higgins and Lapierre will need to be paid soon as well. And don't forget the Sedins will be hitting UFA in two seasons. So Doan's terms have to make sense because - as Drance points out on the same topic - you shouldn't blow up a cap strategy which has taken years to form.

This isn't akin to what happened with a departing Salo or even by welcoming Mats Sundin for 30 seconds; different players, different needs, different times. Doan's addition can help in the short term but could hinder horribly in the long term. To that end he's like many UFA's: in the dead of summer they sound so enticing until you pull back and consider the bigger picture.

For a change, the Canucks are in the driver's seat and should remember that as the drive for Doan's services play out the next two weeks.