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May 20, 2012

For Those Who Think Brooklyn's Layout Could Never Be Changed

There are a lot of people who say that the Barclays Center hockey layout couldn't be changed even if everyone involved wanted to.  Well the Coyotes played in an arena with similar issues and the city of Phoenix had a plan to fix the poor end of the America West Arena.

The city of Phoenix and America West Arena officials plan to unveil a proposal Thursday that would fix the view from up to 3,300 seats, ensuring hockey fans can see both goals.
"There will be more than 17,000 seats with unobstructed views in the arena," Sheryl Sculley, the assistant city manager, said Tuesday.
Currently, fans in 4,200 of the seats can only see one goal when the Phoenix Coyotes play there.

The first phase of the city's proposal would replace about 2,000 of the seats at a cost of $10 million. A second phase could replace an additional 1,300 seats and make other improvements.
Phoenix officials said the renovations would create different seat configurations for varying sporting events. They have recommended that the changes be made even if the Coyotes move to Scottsdale.
Sculley said the plan would be paid for through the arena fund already used to make improvements at the city-owned facility.
"The Coyotes are a great team to have downtown. We want them to stay downtown. We want them to stay at America West," Sculley said. "We hope this takes care of it."

 These changes were never made to the America West Arena, since the Coyotes were unhappy with there lease and wanted there own arena.  The Islanders know all to well the effect a terrible lease can have on a franchise.  The Islanders have what is consider the worse lease in sports and it has had a strangle hold on the team since the day they agreed to it in 1986.  The key for any deal concerning the Islanders is going to be the lease.  The lease will be what determines how successful the team will be wherever they play be it Nassau, Suffolk, Brooklyn, Queens, or even if they leave New York.

If the Islanders ever do move to Brooklyn and the team is successful on and off the ice there, the layout of for hockey at the Barclays Center could and would most likely be changed to make accommodations.  I wouldn't expect major changes to the arena at first, but over time if everybody is happy with the deal those changes can and will most likely take place.

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