Adam Fox’s practice layoff paid off with solid Game 1 performance for Rangers



Whatever maintenance kept Adam Fox off the ice for practice in the week leading into the second round did not keep the defenseman from putting together a solid Game 1 performance against the Hurricanes.

“It felt good,” Fox said after Monday’s practice. “I think it was more being off for a little while, you jump back into it, but yeah, felt good. They’re a team where you’re gonna be defending a little bit, you’re gonna have to battle hard. I felt like the game was pretty good.”

Fox has been on the wrong end of two different collisions this season, first with Carolina’s Sebastian Aho back in November — which put him out of the lineup for 10 games — and then with Nick Jensen in Game 4 against Washington.

Adam Fox of the Rangers exits the arena after warm-ups prior to Game 1 NHLI via Getty Images

The extra time between series was a boon as Fox got to take five days off the ice before rejoining the team for practice the day before Game 1.

He ultimately skated his usual 23:01 and notched an assist, though he was on the ice for a defensive breakdown when Martin Necas skated between Fox and Ryan Lindgren to score Carolina’s second goal in the 4-3 Rangers victory.

“There’s definitely room to clean it up. I can speak for myself, a few breakdowns on that one goal especially, the lock where they got in there,” Fox said. “I think we had a pretty good recipe there, winning the special teams is always gonna set you up for success and it’s gonna be a battle five-on-five. I think there’s always things you can work on, especially in a series where you’re gonna be playing the same team a lot.”

Rangers defenseman Adam Fox #23, on the ice during practice at the Rangers practice facility in Tarrytown
Rangers defenseman Adam Fox #23, on the ice during practice at the Rangers practice facility in Tarrytown. Charles Wenzelberg / New York Post

The third line of Kaapo Kakko, Alex Wennberg and Will Cuylle has just one point among them in the playoffs, but showed signs of breaking out in Game 1 when they outshot Carolina 5-1 while on the ice together.

“I think you need everybody’s hands on the rope and so it’s important,” coach Peter Laviolette said. “Some of the things that get done or they don’t get mentioned as much because they didn’t have a goal and three assists or whatever it might be, doesn’t mean it’s not important to our team.”

After skating just 7:06 in Game 1, Matt Rempe was on the ice late after Monday’s practice. However, there is no expectation of Rempe coming out of the lineup for Game 2.

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