Mark Fayne wants to “bring some consistency” to an Oilers’ defense that desperately needs some.
“They have such firepower up front,” Fayne said Tuesday of his new team, per the Edmonton Sun. “My job is to get them the puck and let them do their job.”
The Oilers signed the 27-year-old defenseman to a four-year, $14.5 million contract on July 1. And while many are wondering how Fayne will fare without his old New Jersey partner, Andy Greene, the move to the burly Western Conference is something he believes will be good for his game.
“The tougher thing for me is playing against the smaller, fast guys, [so] I’m actually looking forward to the West,” Fayne said, per the Edmonton Journal. “My style and build might be better against the bigger guys.”
Edmonton had the NHL’s highest goal-against average (3.26) in 2013-14. Though not all of that was on the defense — much of it was on the goaltending, and some more of it was on the forwards’ inability to maintain possession in the offensive zone — the Oilers are counting on Fayne to be a big part of the solution.
“Nope,” Dubinsky said. “You know, I’ve played the same way my whole career and I’m not going to change. The next time I have an opportunity to play (Crosby), I’m going to play him hard.”
In case you’re wondering, that next opportunity comes on Dec. 21 in Pittsburgh, assuming that both players are healthy and not suspended.
One can understand Dubinsky’s perspective, although such honesty would be that much more interesting if there’s another incident with Crosby. His initial reaction to the hit was interestingly candid, admitting that his “stick rode up” on his adversary.
Would that stance – which, from a harsher view, might seem flippant to Dubinsky’s critics – open the door for a bigger future bit of a discipline?
Maybe, maybe not … but at least his comments aren’t as inflammatory as what John Tortorella said (at least on the record).
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