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Islanders: Best Player To Wear Number 32

TORONTO, ON - JANUARY 26: Steve Thomas #32 of the New York Islanders skates against the Toronto Maple Leafs during NHL game action on January 26, 1994 at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Graig Abel/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - JANUARY 26: Steve Thomas #32 of the New York Islanders skates against the Toronto Maple Leafs during NHL game action on January 26, 1994 at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Graig Abel/Getty Images) /
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Continuing our best of series, today we will look at the best player to wear number 32 for the New York Islanders in their history.

17 players have worn the number 32 for the New York Islanders in their history. The first to ever do so was Bruce Affleck in 1984. Some other notable players to wear it were Brad Lauer, Niklas Andersson, Trevor Linden, Brendan Witt, and most recently Ross Johnston.

Of that bunch, we’ll go with Brad Lauer for the honorable mention. Lauer was selected by the Isles in the second round of the 1985 draft. A little over a year later, he’d make his debut as a winger putting up 21 points in 61 games.

His best year came in his sophomore season. Lauer had 35 points and 17 goals in 69 games played as a 21-year-old. During the 1991-92 season, the Isles moved Lauer in a trade with the Blackhawks along with Brent Sutter which yielded Adam Creighton and Steve Thomas.

I guess it’s fitting because Steve Thomas is our winner today. In 71 games with the Isles in that 1991-1992 season, Thomas had 70 points (28 goals, 42 assists). The following year would be the best year of his career which was a 87 point (37 goals, 50 assists) season.

In the playoffs that year, Thomas had 17 points in 18 games including nine goals. The following year again Thomas was nearly a point per game player with a career-high of 42 goals and 75 points to his name.

The 1994-95 season would be his last on the Island, as he finished with 26 points in 47 games. In October of 1995, the Isles traded Thomas for Claude Lemieux who they flipped for 58 games of Wendel Clark.

In 275 career games on the Island, Thomas would finish with 118 goals and 258 points. After the 2003-2004 season, he’d call it a career after 20 seasons in the league, and 933 points to his name.

Next. Best Player To Wear Number 31

In his post-playing career he was a player consultant with Tampa bay in 2010 before moving to an assistant coach position from 2012-2016.

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