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Born March 21, 1966 (1966-03-21) (age 43),
Dearborn, Michigan, USA
Height
Weight
6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
240 lb (109 kg; 17 st 2 lb)
Position Defense
Shoots Left
Pro clubs Toronto Maple Leafs
Washington Capitals
Boston Bruins
San Jose Sharks
NHL Draft 4th overall, 1984
Toronto Maple Leafs
Career 1984 – 1998

Albert Anthony "Skullet Al" Iafrate (pronounced /ˌaɪʌˈfreti/, EYE-ə- FRAY-tee; born March 21, 1966) is a retired American professional ice hockey defenseman who played in the National Hockey League between 1984 and 1999. He is perhaps most famous for his rocket slap shot that set the NHL Skills Competition record, which stood for 16 years, at 105.2 miles per hour (169.3 km/h). The record was broken in 2009 by Zdeno Chára of the Boston Bruins with a slap shot at 105.4 mph in Montreal. He was given the nickname "the Planet" by Boston Globe sportswriter Kevin Dupont for his "all world" talent.

Iafrate was selected 4th overall by the Toronto Maple Leafs in the 1984 NHL Entry Draft after a standout career with the Detroit Compuware Spitfires and a short but distinguished stay with the Belleville Bulls of the Ontario Hockey League (OHL). During his time with the Spitfires, Iafrate was a teammate of fellow Detroit-area natives and future NHL players Kevin Hatcher and Shawn Chambers. Iafrate played for Team USA in the 1984 Winter Olympics at Sarajevo, Yugoslavia. Hatcher and Iafrate would later team to quarterback the Washington Capitals power play in the early 1990s.

He played 799 career NHL games, scoring 152 goals and 311 assists for 463 points. He also compiled 1301 penalty minutes. His best season statistically was the 1992–93 season, when he scored 25 goals and 41 assists for 66 points with the Washington Capitals. That year the Capitals set a record for most goals by defensemen on a team in one season.

Iafrate dealt with numerous injuries throughout his career, including a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his knee, sciatic nerve damage in his back, and a ruptured appendix. These injuries ultimately led to his retirement at age 32. Iafrate attempted comebacks during the 1998–99 and 2001–02 seasons, although these comebacks ended during training camp.

Iafrate currently is involved in the research and development department with Warrior Hockey.

Career statistics

    Regular season   Playoffs
Season Team League GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
1983–84 Belleville Bulls OHL 10 2 4 6 2 3 0 1 1 5
1984–85 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 68 5 16 21 51
1985–86 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 65 8 25 33 40 10 0 3 3 4
1986–87 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 80 9 21 30 55 13 1 3 4 11
1987–88 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 77 22 30 52 80 6 3 4 7 6
1988–89 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 65 13 20 33 72
1989–90 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 75 21 42 63 135
1990–91 Toronto Maple Leafs NHL 42 3 15 18 113
1990–91 Washington Capitals NHL 30 6 8 14 124 10 1 3 4 22
1991–92 Washington Capitals NHL 78 17 34 51 180 7 4 2 6 14
1992–93 Washington Capitals NHL 81 25 41 66 169 6 6 0 6 4
1993–94 Washington Capitals NHL 67 10 35 45 143
1993–94 Boston Bruins NHL 12 5 8 13 20 13 3 1 4 6
1996–97 San Jose Sharks NHL 38 6 9 15 91
1997–98 San Jose Sharks NHL 21 2 7 9 28 6 1 0 1 10
NHL totals 799 152 311 463 1301 71 19 16 35 77

External links








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