If Shane Doan departs the Winter Olympics in Turin next month with just a few points by his name, neither he nor coach Pat Quinn would be overly concerned.
Doan scored the tournament-winning goal in the 2004 World Cup, when Canada beat Finland 3-2 at the Air Canada Centre in the title game. Until that magical moment, he had formed Canada's top checking line with Joe Thornton and Kris Draper.
Doan, also the captain of last night's Maple Leafs opponent, the Phoenix Coyotes, will slip into whatever role Quinn thinks is best. In Quinn's mind, the 29-year-old Doan will be as valuable in the dressing room as he will be on the ice.
"He is one of those guys who fits into us becoming a team, and that really is the goal," Quinn said. "You can argue all you want about what skill guys should be (on Team Canada), but what I know about (Doan) is he has fit in before.
"That's the real race. When you get there, it's who becomes a team first. You need guys who are going to think that way."
Doan will be taking part in the Olympics for the first time.
"To be on that team is everyone's dream," Doan, a native of Halkirk, Alta., said. "You understand your role. You know everyone has to do their job as hard as they can because it makes everyone else look better. You represent everybody when you are on the ice."
NEDVED ON THE OUTS
The Coyotes wouldn't mind moving Petr Nedved, who last night was a healthy scratch for the second game in a row. Nedved has two goals and eight assists in 24 games. But at $2.2 million US this year, Nedved is not a huge attraction.
"There's nothing more to report other than that Petr is going through a rough time," Coyotes coach Wayne Gretzky said. "He has had a hard year with a lot of injuries and for us to be a better team we need Petr to play at the level he is capable of. I don't know when he will play again."
THINKING OF POHL
It wouldn't be surprising if John Pohl is recalled from the Toronto Marlies when Darcy Tucker goes on injured reserve.
"John played really well when he was here and he continues to play well with the Marlies," Quinn said. "He is knocking on the door."