It may not have been the big fish Canucks fans were hoping for, but you can bet pumping a 140-pound tuna to the surface in Panama was memorable for a vacationing GM Mike Gillis.
Those tuna are renowned fighters and that was a huge fish. It’s not easy.
Much like trying to land Shane Doan.
The Canucks are in on the Doan sweepstakes, having offered the power forward a competitive multi-year contract that is at least three years in length.
How competitive? Well, it’s relative, but teams aren’t in on Doan if they’re offering one- and two-year deals.
The Canucks offer probably is not near the four-year, $30 million monster an Eastern Conference team reportedly tabled.
But that offer did have a ring of absurdity to it. You could see it coming from the Magical Man who lives in Happy-Land on Lollipop Lane.
Whether it’d be enough to sway Doan remains to be seen. But, remember, this is a player who has dedicated his entire career to the Phoenix Coyotes organization. Could that same player be lured to a situation that doesn’t fit his criteria just because it’s the largest financial windfall?
First and foremost among Doan’s criteria is to stay in Phoenix.
He wouldn’t be rounding into late July without a contract otherwise. And his return to Phoenix became more likely Monday when Glendale formally rejected the petition which was seeking a referendum on the Coyotes lease agreement.
Following that, an ESPN report quoted one general manager who claims he’s “90-per-cent sure” Doan will be playing in the desert whenever the NHL hockey season starts.
If Doan were to ever decide this summer the Phoenix ownership situation is just too tenuous to re-sign, he already has lots of multi-year offers from good teams to choose from.
There are several fascinating options that fit some, or all, of his criteria, which, aside from term and money, include location, management, players and Stanley Cup chances.
John Gambadoro of KTAR in Phoenix has the number of offers in for Doan up to six, including the Canucks, L.A Kings, San Jose Sharks, Detroit Red Wings, Buffalo Sabres and the Pittsburgh Penguins. Seven, if you’re including the Coyotes.
That’s quite the list of options, allowing Doan to consider the opportunity to play with either the Sedins, Anze Kopitar, Joe Thornton, Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg, Evgeni Malkin or Sidney Crosby.
Yeah, there’s just a little bit of talent on that list.
Doan’s agent Terry Bross confirmed to Kukla’s Korner on Tuesday that Buffalo is still in the running, which will only encourage speculation the Sabres are the team that made the massive $30-million offer.
Also not helping the perception is that this is the same organization that committed $67 million to Ville Leino and Christian Ehrhoff last summer.
The Canucks are serious enough in Doan to bend something Gillis has called an “unwritten rule,” offering him a multi-year deal, even though he’s 35 years old and has played 1,000 games. Under the Canucks’ current management, players who are both more than 34 years old and have played 1,000 games have been considered high risk.
Look no further than Sami Salo, who couldn’t get the two-year deal he wanted out of Vancouver.
But Gillis has said he’s willing to make exceptions, and this is a team that isn’t shy about saying it’s going all-in to try to win a Stanley Cup. There is just no free agent who could help them as much as Doan could.
Doan has been durable, having missed only 33 games in 13 years. But that also means there are significant miles on the treads.
Many believe Doan is exactly the type of player the Canucks have been missing the past two years, most notably because he’s 230 pounds and the Canucks have been playing small for years.
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