October 24, 2012

Islanders head west: by 21 miles. The New York Islanders, winners of four consecutive Stanley Cups in the early '80s but no playoff series since 1993, have signed a 25-year lease with Brooklyn's new Barclays Center, home of the NBA's Nets. They have two more years at the moribund Nassau Coliseum.

Though originally planned to be NHL-compatible, Barclays Center was built as an NBA arena. It holds 14,500 for hockey -- fewest in the NHL (Winnipeg's MTS Centre holds 15,004; Hartford's XL Center, formerly the Civic Center, holds 15,365) and 1,750 fewer than the Nassau Coliseum. The proposed seating layout is that of a horseshoe, with no seats behind one goal.

The team is to keep its name (Brooklyn is, after all, part of Long Island), thus avoiding such possible travesties as this.

posted by Mookieproof to hockey at 09:43 PM - 4 comments

Although by "moribund", you sort of mean "Nassau County unwilling to spend $400m on behalf of a private enterprise in a league currently locking out its players."

It probably dooms the Coliseum and the area around it, and I suspect that the ill fit of the Barclays Center will start to wear on the team within a couple of years of the move, but we'll see.

posted by etagloh at 11:59 PM on October 24

Why would a team sign a 25 year lease to move in? I'd think 5-10 years for the first lease and then a long term renewal, because a) 14,500 aren't many seats, b) they'll have to play second fiddle to the Nets in terms of scheduling and c) not sure the Brooklyn hipster community will be quite as welcoming without a hiphop mogul fronting the team.

Then again, the Islanders have had one of the worst executive suites in the NHL for a long time now so perhaps I ought not be so surprised.

posted by billsaysthis at 11:46 AM on October 25

But they won't get revenue from parking, concessions, etc., in the way that is supposedly essential for modern NHL teams to survive and which is a main reason they lobby for public funds for new arena construction. It doesn't add up at all.

posted by rumple at 01:27 PM on October 25

The Islanders get more than $20M a year from their TV package, which will not be affected by the move. That helps.

posted by wfrazerjr at 09:27 AM on October 26

You're not logged in. Please log in or register.