Hurricanes trade top prospect Fox to Rangers

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The New York Rangers’ added another significant piece to their rebuild on Tuesday afternoon when they acquired the rights to defense prospect Adam Fox from the Carolina Hurricanes in exchange for the Rangers’ second-round pick in 2019 and a conditional third-round pick in 2020.

The condition on the third-round pick is that it will become a second-round pick if Fox plays in at least 30 games for the Rangers during the 2019-20 season.

Originally drafted by the Calgary Flames in the third-round of the 2016 NHL draft, the Hurricanes acquired Fox as part of this past summer’s Dougie Hamilton trade.

Fox had been a prized prospect in the Flames’ farm system but they included him in the deal because there was serious concern as to whether or not he would actually sign with the team.

It hasn’t exactly been a well kept secret that the 21-year-old Long Island, N.Y.  native had his sights set on signing with the Rangers as soon as his draft rights had expired, allowing him to become a free agent. Because of that it is kind of surprising that the Hurricanes, given what little leverage they almost certainly had in trade talks, were able to get as much they did out of the Rangers.

The second-round pick in 2019 is the 37th overall pick in the draft and there is still the potential for next year’s pick to also become a second-rounder.

The Hurricanes now have three second-round picks in 2019, already possessing their own pick and the Buffalo Sabres’ pick as part of the Jeff Skinner trade.

Fox spent the past three seasons playing his collegiate hockey at Harvard where he recorded 21 goals, 95 assists, and 116 total points in 97 games. He was a runner-up for the Hobey Baker Award this past season, finishing as a runner up to now-Colorado Avalanche defender Cale Makar.

There is no telling at this point what type of career Fox has ahead of him, but this is still a nice piece for the Rangers to add to their organization simply due to the potential he has. It also comes just a couple of weeks after the Rangers won big in the draft lottery by moving up to the No. 2 overall pick where they will likely end up with Kaapo Kakko (assuming Jack Hughes goes No. 1 overall to the New Jersey Devils). 

Related: What Rangers gained in draft lottery

Adam Gretz is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @AGretz.