New York Rangers Adam Fox wins Norris Trophy; first defenseman to do so without making playoffs

By Forever Blueshirts
adam fox
May 6, 2021; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Adam Fox (23) during the first period against the Boston Bruins at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

New York Rangers sophomore defenseman Adam Fox has been announced as the winner of the Norris Trophy. He beat out the Lightning’s Victor Hedman and Avalanche’s Cale Makar.

Members of the Professional Hockey Writers Association submitted their ballots for the Norris Trophy at the conclusion of the regular season, and Fox rightfully won the award which was presented by former Rangers great, Brian Leetch.

“It’s definitely special to have my friends and family come see me play,” Fox said as he accepted the honor. “It’s definitely a privilege to play for the Rangers have you present me the award.”

Adam Fox wins Norris Trophy

Adam Fox Norris
Mar 11, 2021; Boston, Massachusetts, New York Rangers defenseman Adam Fox (23) shoots the puck during the second period against the Boston Bruins at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

What a season the 23 year-old from Jericho, LI had. Fox finished second overall in scoring for blue-liners with 47 points. His 42 assists were the most by an NHL defenseman and he was seventh for total ice time. Only Edmonton’s Tyson Barrie had more points playing on a team that boasts both Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl.

Fox winning the Norris Trophy is historic. He is just the second defenseman to win it in his sophomore season with the great Bobby Orr being the only other one. More importantly, he’s the first ever to do so without his team qualifying for the playoffs.

In researching all winners starting in 1953-54, no Norris winner ever missed the playoffs. Starting with the Red Wings Red Kelly, not a single one earned the honor without his team in postseason action. Some may quibble that last year’s winner, Roman Josi was the first but the Nashville Predators were part of the Return-To-Play format. Even though they lost in the qualifying round, all points scored in those games were categorized as playoff stats.

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