Carolina Hurricanes general manager Don Waddell said Tuesday that Harvard defenseman Adam Fox was undecided on whether to sign an entry-level contract with the team.
Fox was a part of the blockbuster June 2018 trade in which the Canes sent defenseman Noah Hanifin and forward Elias Lindholm to the Calgary Flames in exchange for defenseman Dougie Hamilton, forward Micheal Ferland and Fox. Waddell said soon after the trade that he was “99.9 percent” sure the Canes would get Fox signed this year.
Jeff Cox of the New England Hockey Journal and New York Hockey Journal reported Tuesday that Fox had made the decision to stay at Harvard for his senior season and not sign with the Canes. Cox, citing unnamed sources, reported Fox would become a free agent after his final collegiate season.
Attending the Canes’ prospects camp later in June 2018, Fox was asked about his intentions and the speculation in Calgary that he could remain at Harvard through his senior year, increasing his pro hockey options.
“I’ve never said anything about my plans,” Fox said. “For me, it’s not that I’ve thought all the way down the road and had this whole thing planned out, of what I want to do.”
Waddell said during the camp that Fox was “one of the premier defensemen not in the National Hockey League.” He said he was confident Fox would sign with Carolina after his junior year, saying discussions already had been held with Fox and his adviser.
“I don’t see it being as issue at all,” Waddell said.
Should Fox return to Harvard for a senior season and become a free agent, he could end up signing with the Canes after the season. But there are a number of D-men stacked up ahead of him in the Hurricanes organizational depth chart including former first-round picks Haydn Fleury and Jake Bean.
An All-America at Harvard, Fox has twice been a member of Team USA in the IIHF World Junior Championship, winning a gold medal in 2017.