Why ‘people hate’ Rangers’ Adam Fox: report

NHL: New York Rangers at Ottawa Senators
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Adam Fox is one of the most respected players in the NHL. But is the New York Rangers star also among the most hated?

That would be hard to believe since Fox is not exactly a controversial character like, say, Boston Bruins captain Brad Marchand.

But in an ESPN poll about the top defensemen in the NHL this season, an NHL executive said, “people hate Fox for some reason.”

Wait, what? Really? Hate Adam Fox? Why?

Well, if you dig into the context of the quote, it does make sense.

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Rangers’ Adam Fox finishes fourth in ESPN poll about top NHL defensemen

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Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY SportsCredit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Fox finished fourth in the voting by 20 NHL panelists. That group included 10 NHL players and 10 people who work in an NHL front office.

The Blueshirts defenseman had 112 voting points to finish behind Cale Makar of the Colorado Avalanche (197 points), Quinn Hughes of the Vancouver Canucks (146 points) and Miro Heiskanen of the Dallas Stars (119 points).

Somehow Fox was left off two ballots, including one by a Western Conference player. He also finished ninth or 10th on three ballots.

Hence, the “hate” comment. As in, Fox is taken for granted and overlooked for how great he is.

Fox won the Norris Trophy as the top NHL defensemen after the 2020-21 season and finished second last season behind Erik Karlsson, then of the San Jose Sharks.

This season, Fox is tied for eighth among NHL defensemen with 39 points (eight goals, 31 assists) in 43 games. The 25-year-old missed 10 games with a lower-body injury earlier this season after a collision with Sebastian Aho of the Carolina Hurricanes.

There were several other intriguing takes in the ESPN survey.

One NHL executive said two-time Stanley Cup winner Drew Doughty of the Los Angeles Kings, who finished 10th on the list, “has been living off his reputation for five seasons.”

Another had this to say about Winnipeg Jets defenseman Josh Morrissey, who finished ninth in the voting.

“I’m not a Morrissey guy. I don’t get it. Morrissey would not be in the top 10 for me, if we’re talking all-around D-men. That’s crazy.”

After the top four, the top 10 was rounded out by Charlie McAvoy (Boston Bruins; fifth)), Victor Hedman (Tampa Bay Lightning; sixth), Roman Josi (Nashville Predators; seventh), Jaccob Slavin (Carolina Hurricanes; eighth), Morrissey (Jets; ninth) and Doughty (Kings; 10th).

Jim Cerny is Executive Editor at Forever Blueshirts and Managing Editor at Sportsnaut, with more than 30 years of... More about Jim Cerny

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