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SBD/October 26, 2012/Franchises
Islanders Face Issues With Relocation, But Should Reap Financial Benefit
Published October 26, 2012
SPACIOUS SETTING: Wang addressed the seating capacity of Barclays Center, saying that Islanders fans “will find room among the 15,000 or so seats that will be available.” Wang: “If you look at the Coliseum, we have about 16,200 seats in the arena. I wish I could say to you, 'Gee, we're sold out every night.' As you know, we're not.” He added, “Yes, we should be so lucky as to have a problem (in Brooklyn) of not having enough seats. When we say 14,500, we're talking about unobstructed seats. We have to work on it. At 15,000, it's really good, it's an intimate environment" (NEWSDAY, 10/26). But in Toronto, Steve Buffery writes, “Here’s my problem with the Islanders moving to Brooklyn: It’s another example of a league attempting to use a venue (Barclays Center) as the main attraction in marketing a team, which never works, at least not for long.” Buffery: “Fancy, new arenas don’t stabilize franchises. There has to be a market for the sport” (TORONTO SUN, 10/26).
ALL GOOD IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD: On Long Island, Neil Best wonders whether the Islanders might “prove more of a business threat” to the Rangers in Brooklyn. MSG President & CEO Hank Ratner said, “We'll see what happens. We look at it that the Islanders are still in the marketplace. If they go to Brooklyn, I think they'll continue that traditional rivalry. It's a great thing for us, the Islanders and the sport of hockey” (NEWSDAY, 10/26).