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Could Brooklyn's Barclays Center Be Future Home for the New York Islanders?

Thursday, August 04, 2011

Cranes Loom over the Barclays Center

The New York Islanders are stuck with the aging Nassau Coliseum after voters rejected a plan this week that would have revamped the arena.

But the team could still decide to relocate when its lease expires in 2015.

Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz said he would welcome the team to the Barclays Center, the arena under construction at Atlantic Yards.

The sports complex will be home to the Nets basketball team starting with the 2012 season, but that schedule leaves the arena empty about one-tenth of the time.

Wayne McDonnell, a sports management professor at NYU, says Islanders hockey games would be a boon for the new arena.

“It actually gives the Barclays Center another avenue for revenue, growth and opportunity, and also helps them fill an additional 41 days on their calendar each and every year,” he said.

However, McDonnell said that putting a hockey rink in Brooklyn does involve some risk.

“The game is a tough product to push these days, especially in New York, where sports fans are over-saturated,” he said.

The Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum opened in 1972 and has hosted basketball, hockey and concerts over the last 39 years.

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Comments [2]

Bobbo

Barclays Center has always had an ice hockey component. The arena has already booked both college hockey and ice shows. The seating capacity and sight lines don't matter for those events, only for NHL. This isn't an ice issue (and the ice rink systems don't even get installed until March, literally the last item on the construction checklist, so changes can be made if necessary).

Note that the Conseco Field House in Indianapolis, the model for Barclays (at least the interior) has hosted AHL hockey and college hockey.

Aug. 04 2011 06:21 PM
JB from BKLYN

It. Won't. Fit. Why does every story about Barclays Arena & the Islanders miss the simple fact that the design of the arena is too small for regulation NHL ice without a major loss -- i.e., temporary removal and then replacement -- of seats (which also means changeover into/out of ice would be prohibitively expensive). Islanders at Barclays isn't going to happen.

Aug. 04 2011 01:14 PM

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