New York Rangers D Adam Fox is already pressuring Anthony DeAngelo

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Adam Fox, Anthony DeAngelo

New York Rangers’ Anthony DeAngelo might be reconsidering his decision not to sign his qualifying offer due to young Adam Fox. 

Frank Curto

New York Rangers defenseman Anthony DeAngelo has spent the whole summer hoping for a better contractual offer. He, along with Brendan Lemieux, both remain unsigned as training camp is set to begin later this week.

DeAngelo had an up and down season last year that saw him play in 61 games while recording 30 points (four goals).

He did have a promising end to last season. The coaching staff played him more as he began to understand the style of hockey head coach David Quinn expected of him all year.

After seeing how Adam Fox has played for the prospects in Traverse City, he better hope he’s not traded before he decides to sign his qualifying offer.

Now, before everybody points out the obvious, that Fox’s showing was still just a prospect game, it doesn’t take away from what Fox has done on the ice during the tournament.

The Jericho, NY native and former Harvard university student put forth a five-point night on Saturday, recording two goals and three assets in the team’s first win of the tournament. He was also named one of three alternate captains for the game.

Monday afternoon, in Kaapo Kakko’s debut, Fox played a confident game on the blueline. He looked comfortable throughout the contest even as the team trailed 2-0 heading into the third period.

The Rangers battled back and won the game in overtime as Fox led the team. His playing time increased as did his patience on the ice. Though he has plenty to learn, this tournament could lead to better things when camp opens this week.

It’s DeAngelo’s Spot To lose

DeAngelo cannot afford to miss any practice and game action as the pressure is squarely on his back. An RFA with no leverage combined with a hungry, young defenseman with nothing to lose will eventually lead to his demotion or trade.

A holdout of any kind is the last thing he and his agent should be considering. The Rangers have great depth at the position with Yegor Rykov and Libor Hajek just waiting to pounce on an opportunity to make the team.

New York Rangers

The Rangers defenseman needs to swallow his pride and sign his qualifying offer now, then prove he is worthy of a longer contract with more value the next time. He may not have leverage contract wise, but he does have plenty of NHL experience, something Fox, Hajek and Rykov lack.

DeAngelo is needed on this team with the club lacking some talent on the blueline. What he lacks is time. Every day that goes by could lead to another opportunity for Fox or someone else to take his spot.

This was just a small sample of hockey against other teams’ prospects. Its is far from a regular-season NHL game or even a preseason contest. Regardless of what kind of game Fox has been playing in, he has shown that hockey presence so familiar to diehards.

The leader of this prospect team in Traverse City, MI might have just woken up a defenseman who has been waiting for something good to drop in his lap.

His opportunity to play with the Rangers is what he needs to realize and, hopefully, DeAngelo recognizes the opportunity to get himself to training camp this week. The defenseman needs to show the organization that he wants to be with the team.

The only question remaining, “Is Anthony DeAngelo and his agent smart enough to realize this?”

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