Editorials

Islanders: Best Player To Wear Number 70-79

By Matt O'Leary
UNIONDALE, NY - OCTOBER 31: Alexei Yashin #79 of the New York Islanders looks on against the Chicago Blackhawks during the game on October 31, 2006 at Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, New York. The Islanders won 5-2. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
UNIONDALE, NY - OCTOBER 31: Alexei Yashin #79 of the New York Islanders looks on against the Chicago Blackhawks during the game on October 31, 2006 at Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, New York. The Islanders won 5-2. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images) /
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Continuing our best of series, today we will look at the best player to wear numbers 70-79 for the New York Islanders in their history.

Today, we’re going to be looking at the best players to wear number 70-79 in the Islanders history. By the time we get to the 70’s there’s only a hand full of players who have worn the number in franchise history.

Only 13 players ever have worn a number between 70 and 79, so let’s take a look at all of them.

Players To Wear Number 70: None

Players To Wear Number 71: Dennis Vaske, Mark Katic, Michael Dal Colle

Dennis Vaske first wore the number in 1991. He was a second-round pick for the Isles in 1986 and ended up playing five games wearing number 71 before switching over to 37 and 28. In those five games, he had no points and was a +4.

Katic then donned the number in 2011. He played 11 games for the Isles that year and put up one assist averaging 16:26 per game. That was the only 11 games of his NHL career.

Michael Dal Colle, drafted by the Isles fifth overall in 2014, wore the number 71 in 2017-2018. Dal Colle played four games in that number with no points and one shot on goal. He now wears number 28, thanks to Lou Lamoriello.

Winner: None

Players To Wear Number 72: Ron Hextall, Matthieu Schneider, Jeremy Colliton, Anthony Beauvillier

Ron Hextall had a nice 13-year career in the NHL. One season, 1993-1994 was spent with the Islanders. He played in 68 games with a .898 save percentage and 3.08 goals against average.

Schneider got the number next. It was a short-lived but very productive streak. In 78 games over parts of two seasons, he had 14 goals and 56 points from the blue line.

In 2007-2008, Jeremy Colliton wore the number for 16 games. He didn’t register any points and played just 8:46 per night. He would switch to number 37 after the season for the remainder of his career.

Finally, Anthony Beauvillier wore the number for the Islanders during his first two years in the league. He registered 60 points in 137 games before switching to number 18, thanks to Lou Lamoriello.

Winner: Matthieu Schneider

Player To Wear Number 73: None

Players To Wear Number 74: None

Players To Wear Number 75: Brett Lindros

After being selected ninth overall in 1994, Brett Lindros’ career lasted just 51 games. In those 51 games he had seven points (2 goals, 5 assists). Unfortunately, numerous concussions forced him to retire early.

Winner: None

Players To Wear Number 76: None

Players to Wear Number 77: Pierre Turgeon, Cliff Ronning, Alexei Zhitnikov, Trevor Smith

Turgeon was acquired from Buffalo in the Pat LaFontaine trade in the 1991-1992 season. Turgeon was excellent for the Islanders in four years he put up 340 points in 255 games including a 58 goal and 132 point season in 1992-1993.

Ronning wore the number for the Islanders at the end of his career in 2004. he only played in 40 games but he was fairly productive putting up 24 points (9 goals, 15 assists). In his 17 year career he finished with 869 points.

Zhitnikov was solid for the Islanders in the short 89 game stint he spent with them in 2005-2006 and 2006-2007. He played in 89 games putting up 40 points while averaging 23:32 of ice time per night.

In 2008-2009, Smith played seven games with the Islanders scoring one goal and finishing with a -3. He had 11:48 of ice time over that sample size, and he’d go on to play 107 games in six years.

Winner: Pierre Turgeon

Players To Wear Number 78: None

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Players To Wear Number 79: Alexi Yashin

Yes, Yashin was never going to live up to the contract or trade but his production with the Islanders was pretty solid. In five years, he put up 290 points in 346 games eclipsing 60 points three times and in his final year in the league had 50 points in 58 games.

Winner: Alexei Yashin

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