Oilers sign D Ference away from Bruins

The Edmonton Oilers added experience to their defense on the

first day of free agency, signing Andrew Ference on Friday.

Ference signed a four-year, $13 million deal, a hefty raise from

his last contract with the Boston Bruins.

The 34-year-old Edmonton native was a key part of the Bruins’

run to the Stanley Cup final, though there was no room for him to

return to Boston because of salary-cap issues and young defensemen

in their system.

Ference joins a defense that includes Justin Schultz, Ladislav

Smid and Nick Schultz.

In 760 career games, Ference has 37 goals and 156 assists. He

was a part of the Bruins’ Cup champion team in 2011.

The Oilers also signed a pair of ex-Coyotes – center Boyd Gordon

and goaltender Jason Labarbera.

Gordon signed a three-year deal with Edmonton. He has 122 points

in 486 games with Washington and Phoenix.

Labarbera signed a one-year contract. The veteran backup spent

the past four seasons with the Coyotes.

The Oilers also added former New York Islanders forward Jesse

Joensuu, Will Acton and Ryan Hamilton.