Who Are the Most Loyal Athletes on New York Teams?

Who Are the Most Loyal Athletes on New York Teams?
Fact Checked by Pat McLoone

New York sports fans hold a notorious loyalty toward their teams, but that loyalty is not always reciprocated by players and management.

Even stars like Aaron Judge test the free agency waters. Judge ultimately decided to stay in pinstripes rather than join the Giants in San Francisco, but his loyalty toward the Yankees’ organization is more of a rarity across the sports business than it is the norm.

With constant roster turnover now dominant across MLB, the NFL, NBA and NHL, EmpireStakes.com sought to identify the athletes who have demonstrated the most devotion to the Big Apple using a points system we created.

One takeaway? Hockey players are cut just a little bit different, as the top four most loyal New York athletes are NHL players.

While our main focus here is typically New York betting, stay close for research items such as this as well.

Must be 21+ to participate & present in NY. Gambling problem? Call (877-8-HOPENY) or text HOPENY (467369). Visit BetMGM.com for Terms & Conditions. US promotional offers not available in NY, NV, or Puerto Rico.


Our search for the most loyal athlete who currently plays for a New York team used a points system that awards two points for each season played with the team, two points for each contract signed, two points for each contract signed for three or more years and four points for any pay structure changes to allow cap space for the team.

The Most Loyal Standings

Here is a detailed look at New York mainstays, adhering to our system:

Rank Player Team Consecutive Seasons with Team # of Contracts # of Contracts Over 3 Years # of Pay Structure Changes Points
1 Josh Bailey Islanders15 4 3 044
2Casey Cizikas Islanders12 4 3 038
T3 Chris Kreider Rangers11 4 3 036
T3 Anders Lee Islanders11 5 2 036

Islanders center Josh Bailey is the most loyal athlete across New York, according to our system. Bailey, 33, has played his entire career in the Islanders’ sweater since being drafted in 2008. Bailey in October played in his 1,000th NHL game, becoming only the third player from the Islanders to play all 1,000 games with the team.

Bailey also has been steadfast in his devotion to the New York market when coming to the negotiating table, as he’s signed four different contracts with the Islanders over the years, including three for more than three years.

Bailey’s Islanders team is in the middle of the pack when it comes to NHL betting in New York early in December.

DraftKings Sportsbook NY has the Islanders at +4500 to win the Stanley Cup. That ranks 16th among the NHL’s 32 teams.

Overall, he leads the way in New York with 44 points across our model.

Best of the Rest

At No. 2 in our model is Bailey’s Islanders teammate, Casey Cizikas, who has spent 12 seasons in New York and also signed four different contracts with the club. On Sept. 1, 2021, Cizikas signed a six-year, $15 million extension, which should cement the 31-year-old as a staple across the New York sports market for the years to come.

The Rangers’ Chris Kreider and another Islander, Anders Lee, came in tied for third in our model with 36 points each. Both left wingers have played 11 seasons with their respective teams.

In addition to stories about New York’s pro sports teams, EmpireStakes.com is a great source for the best NY betting promos.

Must be 21+ to participate & present in NY. Gambling problem? Call (877-8-HOPENY) or text HOPENY (467369). Visit BetMGM.com for Terms & Conditions. US promotional offers not available in NY, NV, or Puerto Rico.


Thomas Leary is a news editor and writer for EmpireStakes.com. He previously worked at Sports Business Journal for over 6 years, where he helped identify emerging sectors across sports business, such as legalized gambling, and helped launch the publication’s digital newsletter division.

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