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Coyotes' Doan better but not sure when he'll return

by Jerry Brown

GLENDALE, Ariz. - Shane Doan doesn't know how he got sick or when he'll be able to play hockey again for the Phoenix Coyotes.

One thing he does know: He's feeling a whole lot better that he did a week ago.

An illness that began 11 days ago with a fever and body aches during a Western Canadian road trip landed Doan in a Phoenix hospital on Monday for a battery of tests that have done more to eliminate possibilities than produce a diagnosis. But Doan is beginning to respond to medication and was able to take in the Coyotes 3-1 loss against the Carolina Hurricanes Saturday in person.

"It's going to take a little bit of time, but I'll be back," Doan said during a second intermission press briefing that showed more dire rumors of his condition were not the case. "I'm starting to come around. I'm comfortable and getting out and doing things."

Shane Doan
Right Wing - PHX
GOALS: 12 | ASST: 11 | PTS: 23
SOG: 80 | +/-: 1
Doan admitted frustration over the uncertainty of the still-undiagnosed illness, whose test results are expected back early next week.

"It would help if they could say this is what it was or what it is, but I'm responding to what they have me on and I'm feeling better -- feeling way better," he said. "I was not feeling too hot for a few days."

The illness began on Dec. 3, when Doan reported not feeling well during the morning. He played that night against the Edmonton Oilers and again the next night against the Calgary Flames but was struggling with body aches and headaches by the time the Coyotes reached the final stop, a Dec. 6 game against the Vancouver Canucks.

"That's when it got to the point that I had to miss a game," Doan said. "I just wasn't feeling good enough. A doctor in Vancouver helped me out a lot and started me on some medicine that can help."

Doan stayed in Phoenix for testing while the team played a road game against the Colorado Avalanche on Tuesday and didn't see his teammates again until a brief visit on Thursday. Doan said he was able to ride the stationary bike for about 10 minutes on Saturday and is back to doing "normal things" off the ice.

Test results are still pending and no decision has been made on whether Doan will be with the team when they leave town on Monday. The Coyotes start a four-game road trip Tuesday against the Montreal Canadiens.

"We'll have to wait and see how I'm feeling after a couple days," he said. "I'm starting to come around and now I'm comfortable and able to get out and do things."

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