It all began with Nick Kypreos. I haven't been able to nail down a link to the original radio report, but Kypreos is quoted in various sources saying that there are "rumblings" that the Leafs are interested in Shane Doan.
On Monday's Jeff Marek show, Elliotte Friedman said that it can't be confirmed to be happening, but Kypreos was not wrong in what he said.
The comments are at the end of this segment just after they discuss Mike Babcock going to Columbus.
So, suffice it to say there is at least some interest from the Leafs in hiring Shane Doan. Let's unpack that and consider if Doan is likely to reciprocate.
The Leafs have several connections to Doan. He was captain of the Phoenix/Arizona Coyotes for years, including the entire tenure of Brad Treliving as AGM with the team. Doan owns the Kamloops Blazers, who just hosted the Memorial Cup and for whom Fraser Minten plays. Doan is also acquainted with Matthew Knies and Auston Matthews and their families.
After his playing career ended, Doan quickly became connected to Hockey Canada's teams. He began at the 2019 World Championships as a consultant, acted as AGM at the Spengler Cup, and several World Championships and the Olympic Games. He was the GM of the most recent Spenglar Cup team and AGM again at the World Championships.
In 2020, the Coyotes named him Director of Hockey Administration and Chief Hockey Development Officer – titles that seem to straddle the business ops and hockey ops divide. In September, 2022, Sportsnet reported he was taking a step back from the Coyotes. Honestly, the linked article is totally unclear on what that means. But it does mention he worked for the NHL in hockey ops for three years prior. He has never coached at any serious level – it's possible he's coached kids teams.
Speaking of kids, his son has been drafted and now has been signed by the Coyotes, which might be why he isn't comfortable working for the team anymore. That's total speculation, however.
So, if Kypreos and Friedman are hearing solid reports that the Leafs have made an offer, and not just that Treliving has given him a call to test the waters, then it's possible the Leafs are looking for him to join something outside the coaching chain, maybe in the business end of things or in the hockey ops end of things – some kind of brass plaque job.
Contracts end on June 30, so it's entirely possible this will sit quietly unremarked upon until then even if it's real.
Does Doan want to move to Toronto? That's really the important question. He's worked in hockey constantly since he stopped playing and seems, by the jobs he's taken, to be both looking to "give back" by working with Team Canada, but also has genuine career aspirations. Maybe he does want out of Arizona (ahead of the Coyotes by about a year, if you listen to the rest of Friedman and Marek).
We will as always see where this goes.