Auston Matthews Reveals His Idol's Involvement In His Decision To Sign With Maple Leafs

Dawson Mckenzie
August 31, 2023  (2:07 PM)

Brad Treliving's primary goal when he began as GM of the Toronto Maple Leafs was to sign Auston Matthews.

He can now check that off the list. But in getting to this point, how important was bringing on Matthews' boyhood idol Shane Doan into the Leafs Organization?

Doan's Connection with Matthews

Shane Doan, being a Coyote back in his NHL playing days, has been long connected to Matthews, an Arizona native.
Their friendship goes back to when Matthews was just 16, when he attended a Coyotes offseason skate organized by Doan.
In 2014, a 16-year-old Auston Matthews joined a Coyotes offseason skate, organized by captain Shane Doan

That desert connection 🌵

When Doan was brought on as Assistant to the General Manager under Treliving, the implications were clear that this would help keep a strong relationship between Matthews and prospect Mathew Knies, also an Arizona native.
Brad Treliving hiring Shane Doan as the Maple Leafs' assistant GM is quite the statement.

Auston Matthews and Matthew Knies both have significant connections to Doan. Also the Leafs get another incredible hockey mind in the org.


Leafs special advisor to GM Shane Doan on:

Brad Treliving: "He allows people to have a voice"

Auston Matthews: "I enjoy & admire him ... We got a great relationship"

Matthew Knies: "He stopped by yesterday & gave me a Leafs jersey"

Doan's Involvement in Matthews' Decision

Matthews has explained that Doan's involvement in the contract negotiations was limited, occurring only during the beginning of the process and early conversations.
"As far as the contract negotiations, he wasn't really too heavily involved. We have a couple of conversations early on when he ended up taking the job. I'm excited. He's a great person, he's a great hockey mind and I'm really going to enjoy seeing him around the rink a lot this year." - Matthews

It is very likely that Doan wasn't physically involved in the contract negotiations, as this was one of the biggest to ever occur and Doan is only an assistant to Treliving. However, it's hard to imagine that Doan's presence in the organization could hurt Matthews' chances of re-signing.
As I mentioned a few mins ago on @NHLNetwork, #LeafsForever GM Brad Treliving & Shane Doan met with Auston Matthews & his agent Judd Moldaver this week in AZ. This was more of a 'let's get to know each other' dinner & outline TOR's plan. No contract negotiations took place (1/2)

Matthews says Shane Doan didn't play much of a role in contract negotiations but he's stoked that his boyhood idol is now a member of the #Leafsforever front office.

As read on Maple Leafs Daily:
Auston Matthews reveals what Shane Doan's level of involvement was in his contract extension negotiations
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Auston Matthews Reveals His Idol's Involvement In His Decision To Sign With Maple Leafs

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