McAlister played for the Newcastle Knights in 1988. He then moved to England and played rugby union for the Bradford and Bingley Rugby Club before signing with the Oldham Bears and returning to rugby league. He played for Oldham between 1988/89 and 1991/92, becoming the club's vice captain. McAlister earned a Kiwi Trial in 1989. McAlister then spent the 1992/93 season with the Sheffield Eagles before returning to Oldham for the 1993/94 season.
- Rochdale Hornets v Oldham Division 2, 1 December 1991
- Lion Red 1989 Rugby League Annual New Zealand Rugby League, p.10
- John Coffey, Bernie Wood (2008). 100 years: Māori rugby league, 1908-2008. Huia Publishers. pp. xv. ISBN 978-1-86969-331-2.
- Napier, Liam (14 July 2011). "Luke McAlister must buy his way out". Stuff.co.nz. Retrieved 23 September 2011.