SBD/Issue 145/Facilities & Venues

NJSEA May Take Over Prudential Center, Ending Battle With Izod

NJSEA Could Take Over Day-To-Day
Operations Of Prudential Center
Prudential Center and NJSEA officials yesterday said that they "have been talking about a possible joint agreement" that would give the NJSEA "responsibility for the day-to-day running" of the arena, according to a front-page piece by Ted Sherman of the Newark STAR-LEDGER. NJSEA operates Izod Center, and after "two years of fighting over which will be the state's premier entertainment venue," the arenas are "quietly trying to find a way to co-exist without destroying each other." If the new deal is reached, it would give the NJSEA a "stake in the success" of Prudential Center, "bringing an end to the competition for the same lucrative contracts and shows that remain a financial backbone" of both facilities. NJSEA Chair Carl Goldberg said, "It is premature to announce any resolution, but those conversations have begun with the goal of achieving a joint management understanding." AEG has managed Prudential since the arena opened in October '07, but its role at the venue "has caused additional complications because AEG is a direct competitor of Live Nation, the country's largest promoter, which has strong ties to the Meadowlands and has booked only one act into the Prudential Center since it opened." Izod Center's only major sports tenant, the Nets, are planning to move to Brooklyn, but New Jersey state Senate President Richard Codey said that "whether or not the Nets leave, it is time for Izod and the Prudential Center to work together." Codey: "At the end of the day, it will not be anyone but the Nets deciding where they are going to play. They will have to make a decision at some point of moving or throwing in the towel, but in the meantime, we need to do what's in best interest of both sides, and that's for the sports authority taking over the management of the Rock" (Newark STAR-LEDGER, 4/16).

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