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.
Said general manager Craig MacTavish, “When you look at the makeup of our defense right now, it looks like an NHL defense, which it didn’t always last year.”