Mark Fayne recalled from Bakersfield

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The Edmonton Oilers on Sunday recalled defenceman Mark Fayne from Bakersfield of the AHL. Fayne played five games for the Condors, recording an assist, four penalty minutes and an even rating. 

Fayne was undeniably terrible in his last game at the NHL level, playing just eight mistake-filled minutes against the Dallas Stars. The rest of his track record is a little more mixed. He’s had his critics and not without cause, but it’s undeniable that the Oilers have had better success in terms of both shots and goals with him in a tough minutes role with Andrej Sekera than they have with Darnell Nurse in that same spot. 

Immediate Repercussions

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Brandon Davidson left Saturday’s game against the Avalanche after taking a nasty cross-check from Colorado’s Blake Comeau and then falling awkwardly into the boards. This may be an indication that he will miss an extended period of time. If so, it’s a major loss for the Oilers, who have been blessed with shockingly polished two-way play from the rookie defenceman. 

Jack Michaels, however, has another possible interpretation. 

The obvious “someone else” is Justin Schultz, who like Fayne plays on the right side of the ice. Schultz made two brutal mistakes last night, both of which ended up in the back of Edmonton’s net. Todd McLellan and company have shown a refreshing lack of regard for “veteran status” and certainly won’t be uncomfortable scratching Schultz if they feel it’s warranted. 

There’s certainly a case to be made that Schultz deserves to be scratched for a game, but it’s worth keeping in mind that he brings a puck-moving dimension that will be in short supply with Oscar Klefbom on the shelf and Davidson’s status uncertain. 

It’s also worth noting that Eric Gryba was quietly almost as bad against the Avs as Schultz was, with the key difference being that Schultz’s mistakes ended up in the back of the net while his (mostly) did not. 

Long-term Repercussions

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Fayne is under contract for two seasons after this one at a $3.625 million cap hit, meaning that the Oilers have a level of commitment to him that they don’t have to Schultz, Gryba, Nikita Nikitin or Andrew Ference. 

Things would be a lot easier for general manager Peter Chiarelli if he could capture the trust of Edmonton’s coaching staff.

Fayne is only 28 years old. This is a player who in his second season in the NHL averaged better than 20 minutes per game and played every night for a team that went to the Stanley Cup Final. There’s a competent NHL player in there, and somehow he needs to prove it to the coaches. 

Now would be a good time. 

RECENTLY BY JONATHAN WILLIS

  • Van isl Oiler

    Must be to replace Davidson. Sigh…is there no end to the oilers injury woes? As much as I know the Oilers need overall improvements in their on ice personel, injuries continue to play a big part of why they can’t gain consistency. They must be close to leading the league in man games lost to injury this year….again.

  • 24% body fat

    Sorry Jona, but Schultz does not bring anything to the table. He does not move the puck up well, he is not a power play specialist , he does not have a shot and most important he does not know how to play defence. It’s time to rid ourselves of this overpriced dman and move on. He is brutal and there is no way to defend him. Send him to the AHL, place him on waivers or trade him, but please do not put him in the line up.

  • Van isl Oiler

    “There’s certainly a case to be made that Schultz deserves to be scratched for a game, but it’s worth keeping in mind that he brings a puck-moving dimension that will be in short supply ”

    What are you talking about?? Schultz ‘should’ have a puck moving dimension, but it’s a myth not tied into fact. He is a terrible puck mover

  • Leaking5w-30

    “Brandon Davidson left Saturday’s game against the Avalanche after taking a nasty cross-check from Colorado’s Blake Comeau”

    According to Jim Matheson this was “a push” not a chance cross check…

    What a joke.

    • 24% body fat

      I was also shocked at this article as it downplayed the incident. It was a vicious cross check as Davidson was going right past him and he could do nothing to prevent it. Broken ribs or severe bruising at the least.

      That made my blood boil. It would be doubly so if that was my team mate.. Does that not happen anymore???

      There some other things to be established by the Oilers along with winning. That is not to be known as such pussies. My god, to heck with the penalties, screw the two points even but for gods sake DO SOMETHING!!

      If you can’t support your team mate get on the bus to Bakersfield, we don’t need you.

  • 24% body fat

    Schultz does not move the puck unless you mean towards our own net. He is useless. Please do not defend him on any level or point. He does not bring an element of puck movement at all.

  • Robert (AKA Hockey Fan)

    Justin Schultz is not a NHL defenseman. He struggles defensively. He needs to benefit from the AHL for a little bit and get his game back. Or maybe the Oilers need to admit he is not going to be in the long term future. He lacks size and most players these days are bigger and stronger.

  • wiseguy

    Hopefully Fayne will put in the effort and follow the coaches directions to improve his game now that he has gained a new perspective on what his value is around the league. If clearing waivers doesn’t wake you up, nothing will.

  • tileguy

    Whats the deal with Ferrence? Has he fallen completely out of grace with mngt? I know he is useless but at least will be able to tie his skates up which is more than Davidson can do at the moment. Do you think it is so bad that Chia has told Andrew he can rot in the pressbox. I wonder if he is a real part of the team or does he room by himself and not take part in full practices. You just don’t hear anything about him these days?

    I need answers here JW, can you help?

  • tileguy

    So next game’s D lineup could look like:

    Nurse-Sekera
    Some 6/7 Dman-some 6/7Dman
    Some 6/7 Dman-some AHL Dman

    But in all seriousness if we ice some lineup combo including Nikitin, Jultz, Fayne, and/or Gryba and Ference it may be one of the worst D lineups you can ever ice and the oilerz have iced some bad D lineups in recent history.

  • tileguy

    Can you have Ferrence, Jultz and Davidson sit out with someone going on the IR Or do you think Jultz is headed down?

    Perhaps Iro or Juju is headed down to make room? also need answers here.

    • Keith

      Klink to the IR clears a space. KBomb still on reserve. Davidson has not been placed there (so far as I know).

      ETA – if Davidson is out, they would have to recall another defender in order to sit Jultz, in which case they would need to send someone else either down or to the IR.

  • Jiff

    I guess Fayne only has to come up and be better than Jultz, NN and Gryba. Pretty sure a monkey with a ringette stick could do that.

    Sure hope Davidson gets healthy over the holidays.

  • Semenko27

    I would take Shultz and Fayne straight up for a couple of those wavy arm things they have at big car sales. Wavy arm dudes would be impact players compared to these two.

  • 24% body fat

    Will there be repercussions to the gang of officials that missed the cross-check?

    How could there be reviews for off-sides in the NHL? Don’t they employ two yahoos a game-whos only job is to do nothing else but call off-sides? Nothing else but off-sides, yet there is still a need for a review to get it right? Why even bother to have them there to take up the space? There is got to be a better way.

    NHL officiating is amateur at best.

  • 24% body fat

    Schultz yesterday played better than Gryba and Sekera.
    Other players should take a good portion of the blame for the two goals he was on for. Oiler’s poor defence is just as much if not moreso on the forwards.

    Nurse was a beast.

    Davidson played very well.

    Nikitin was better than we’ve seen.

      • 24% body fat

        First goal isn’t all on Jultz. A lot is but some on the bouncing pass and that the Av was right on top of it. Some on the other ‘D’ not backing him up. Some on Nilsson for not making the save.

        Second goal, is on Schultz for forcing a pass but also on Pou and RNH for leaving the zone early. Also, by this time the game was over.

        I was more disappointed in the goaltending and the 2nd and 3rd goals. Wrist shots from the blue line.

        • oilerjed

          You also noticed that TWO avs were behind Shultz right??? An NHL defensemen should be able to recognize when its time to back off the blue line and ensure that he covering his defensive responsibilities.

          Edit: plus Nikki did start to cover but he was coming from the other side of the ice and is not “fleet of foot”.

          • 24% body fat

            You’re talking the second goal. I believe Schultz actually turned the puck over twice there. He did a weak between the legs pass too. As it went on, he stayed on his check to the blue line. Pou left the Dman to pick up the top side of Schultz’s check. As I recall, it was the dman, or the guy in the D position that ended up scoring.

            Yes. Schultz is to blame but not fully.As long as you have the forwards clearing the zone too early, the D is going to look bad.

        • oilerjed

          Yeah but at the time the puck was coming back to him, he was not being pressured. He simply bobbled the pass and got burnt. With that being said, there is no way the other defenseman should retreat to cover for Schultz, especially when the Oilers held possession.

          It doesn’t matter if the game was over or not. Soft plays like that are inexcusable. Not only did he force the pass, but the guy that scored was his man. This happens game in and game out, He simply cant defend.

          • 24% body fat

            If you’re talking the second goal, JS was on a forward. Pou left his man to help JS. Niki kind of had his man. The third forward in should have been covered by the Center.

          • oilerjed

            The Moose.

            I watched the goal again. I had another play mixed up. This was the face off win, bank off the boards, intercept, pass and in the net.

            JS was looking up the middle. Decided to fire it out along the boards. It hit a bad angle and rather than rip along the boards, it dead-spotted out to the AV guy that made the pass. Looks bad but wasn’t terrible. The thing is, I don’t think it was a soft play.

  • 24% body fat

    “…but it’s worth keeping in mind that [Schultz] brings a puck-moving dimension…”

    I want you and Henderson to duke it out over this opinion!!

  • oilerjed

    I’m not a Schultz supporter. I expect he’s either going to take a large cut in pay or be gone from the Oilers. He’s just not as bad as you guys think. Now I know how Bradleypi feels.

    It was the same thing with Petry. I stuck up for him and there were maybe two or three others on this site that did as well. The vast majority wanted him gone for nothing.

    ON has the Horcoff Syndrome here. Just because he’s paid too much doesn’t mean he’s a useless player.

    I’ve never heard PC or Tmac refer to JS as a candidate for the Norris. He’ll get handled fine as his contract runs down.

    I agree with Lowetide that Petry is better than Schultz but in Edmonton right now, Schultz is one of the top six defencemen.

    If he’s playing 3rd pairing minutes. Not expected to be an offensive juggernaut and not making 4MM per year, he’s okay. Maybe he’ll improve. Maybe he won’t. I think it’s more likely he will, though it may not be with the Oilers.

    • 24% body fat

      The site was more split about petty than that. It was probably half and half. It’s just the angry people always post more. I have no problem with Schultz as a 3rd pairing d.

  • 24% body fat

    We’ll see how Fayne’s stint in the AHL has impacted his play. Before he was sent down he wasn’t able to make a 6 foot pass tape to tape. That type of non-ability literally kills game flow and breakout momentum. I know Fayne is not a very physical player but if he can make a simple breakout pass tonight against the Jets I say send him packing, along with Schultz.

    Everyone should just throw their Fayne jerseys onto the ice..Jersey total : 0