You cannot talk about the Rangers’ blueline and start with anyone but number 23. Not only is Adam Fox one of the best defensemen in the NHL, but he is also one of the best defensemen in the history of the New York Rangers already. With the Jericho native still getting better with each passing day, you cannot deny that the future is bright on the back end of this organization with people like Adam Fox.
Offensively? Just the 12 goals and 60 helpers for 72 points. Remember that he had a spell for more than a quarter of the season where he just couldn’t score, and this is probably low for him. Think about that, a defenseman that you can genuinely say underperformed his talents with 72 points. Considering he had 74 points in 78 games last season and not 72 in 82 like this year, there’s more to give, and we can see that.
Fox defensively had some moments, but every defenseman is going to have some times where they cannot get it perfect. They are human beings and not machines after all, despite how easy they make playing this incredibly difficult sport look. It was a solid season for Fox and yet it feels like he could have done more in all three zones. It’s a fairly strong inditement of how good he was.
In round one, Fox is going to be the Rangers’ answer to the explosive offense of Dougie Hamilton on the Devils’ blueline. He needs to continue to play at his sparkling best if the Rangers are going to have any chance of beating New Jersey. Fox is one of the most important players for the Blueshirts in this series. If he plays at his best, the Rangers have a shot. If he doesn’t turn up, it could be a long series.