Continuing our best of series, today we will look at the best player to wear number 24 for the New York Islanders in their history.
After back to back strong days with number 22 and 23, we have a bit of a dud with number 24 and the New York Islanders. 24 players, ironically, have worn number 24 starting with Ron Stewart in 1973.
Some other notables who have worn the number are Walt Ledingham, Mikko Makela, Radek Martinek, Brad Boyes, and most recently Scott Mayfield starting in 2018. of that group, Mikko Makela will be our honorable mention.
Makela came up and put up production right away. In 1986, he had 36 points (16 goals, 20 assists) in 56 games. The following year, he had 57 points but his best season came in his third year, 1987-1988.
He had 76 points (36 goals, 40 assists) in 73 games. The following season he was moved to the Kings and his career quickly fizzled out after the 1995 season.
Our winner today is Gord Lane. Lane was acquired by the Islanders in 1979 via trade for Mike Kaszycki straight up. He would play 55 games for the Islanders that year and have 16 points along the way.
Lane’s best season with the Islanders was his first year as he never played more than 60 regular seasons with the team in his six years with the Isles and his next highest point total was 12. With that being said, he was a staple of those Stanley Cup teams playing 75 playoff games over his six-year tenure with the Isles.
Lane got hurt early in the 1984 playoffs, and the Isles certainly missed his defensive abilities as an underrated enforcer in that series. When thinking of those teams, Lane isn’t necessarily the first guy that comes to mind.
But he was a solid role player on four championship teams, so for that, he is our winner today for the best player to wear number 24 in Isles history.