I’ve been somewhat perplexed by both the coaching staff’s handling of the veteran defenceman as well as the public perception of Mark Fayne. By eye, he has played reasonably well, good enough to play regular minutes for the Oilers. Fayne has had a history of being a serviceable player, establishing himself in New Jersey before being signed by the Oilers in 2014. He’s in his prime, can play against the oppositions best players and shows well by the majority of the performance metrics.
A quick glance at his underlying numbers confirms what I think of him. He’s not the most offensively gifted player, but the team tends to have the puck when he’s on the ice. This season, the Oilers have received a higher proportion of scoring chances with Fayne on the ice, and they even get a higher proportion of the high danger chances. He’s definitely improved from last season, but keep in mind we’re only 19 games in.
Full article is at The Copper & Blue.