All you need to know about Harvard defenseman Adam Fox is that Wikipedia lists the two-time All-American defenseman among the most notable persons to hail from Jericho, New York, right alongside late legendary singer/songwriter Harry Chapin and actress Natalie Portman, a Harvard alumna.
Distinguished company to be sure for Fox, who turned 21 last Sunday. Yet, the burgeoning talents of the smooth-skating 5-foot-11 blueliner are just touching the surface despite a lofty resume that belies his youth.
Fox grew up in Nassau County on the north shore of Long Island just 30 minutes from midtown Manhattan, which is a prime reason he has always followed the exploits of the New York Rangers. Fox played for the Under-16 Long Island Gulls, where teammates included current Bruin and ex-Boston University defenseman Charlie McAvoy.
"My dad (Bruce) put me on skates when I was about three years old. We used to skate at the New York Islanders' practice rink called 'Iceworks'," Fox said.
Fox went on to play for the U.S. National Development Program (USNDP) where he emerged as the third-highest scoring defenseman in team history (86 points from 2014-16).
He enjoyed a banner freshman year at Harvard, helping the Crimson end a 24-year hex by winning its first Beanpot title since 1993. Fox also reunited with McAvoy to lead the United States to a gold medal at the World Junior Tournament before returning the next year to help the Americans claim bronze.
Along the way, NHL scouts took notice. It was Calgary, which drafted Fox in the third round of the 2016 NHL Draft. Last June, Calgary included the rights to Fox in a trade that sent ex-Bruins blueliner Doug Hamilton and Michael Ferland to Carolina for Elias Lindholm and ex-BC star Noah Hanifan.
This season, Fox became the first defenseman in college hockey to reach 100 career points since Wisconsin's Justin Schultz in 2011-2012. Fox is one of four Crimson defensemen to reach that figure, joining Hobey Baker winner Mark Fusco (1983), Mark Benning (1987) and Randy Taylor (1987).
Fox, who has 8-26-34 totals, leads all defensemen in points-per-game (1.36). He's tied with UMass' Cale Makar (10-24-34) for 16th in overall scoring.
"I think a true mark of a great player is that they make others around them better. I think Adam really typifies that unique style of guy," Harvard coach Ted Donato said. "He plays with poise and composure. It filters right through the rest of the team. He really has that sixth sense of what's going on out there. He just reminds me of some of the great players that I was fortunate to play with and coach both at Harvard and beyond.
"In a big game, he just gives you that sense of confidence like (former Hobey Baker winner) Lane MacDonald did. I'm not going to compare him, but another guy is Brian Leetch. The type of guy who can make plays out there where, if you're coaching, you say, 'don't try this at home.' He simply sees plays out there before they happen," Donato continued.
Fox downplays being mentioned alongside some of the big names in college hockey.
"I think you see and hear some of those things and they're nice but it's nothing that I can control," Fox said. "There are a lot of good players in 11-7-0, college hockey and to have your name mentioned in that kind of category is pretty special. But, for me, right now, it's not a main focus. I think I try to play a strong offensive game from the back end, creating plays for my teammates. I think my strength is my hockey sense. But, yeah, it's definitely creating offense for my team."
No. 17 Harvard (14-8-3, 10-6-2 ECAC) is locked in a fourth-place tie with No. 11 Clarkson 20-10-0, 11-7-0) as it prepares to host Brown (10-10-5, 7-6-5) and Yale (13-9-3, 11-6-1) this weekend.
"We're playing good hockey, right now. We started off the season a little slow but we're starting to get our legs under us. I think we're really hitting our stride," Fox said.
This article is written by John Connolly from Boston Herald and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.