Search This Blog

June 30, 2012

Things Are Quiet on the Arena Front

As we get deeper into summer and the hockey off season things are completely quiet on the arena front.  For the past several weeks nothing new has come out.  The last we heard Ed Mangano handed in his proposal for the hub, but no details were released of the plan.  There have even been murmurs that an arena will not be included in the plan.  On the Brooklyn front the team spent a lot of time at the draft party promoting the October 2nd game at the Barclays Center and even came out with a shirt for the event..

The longer this issue goes with any news this off season the worse the future of the Islanders in Nassau County looks.  Things look so bad that the head of the labor unions on Long Island threw out the ideas of using the unions pension money to build a new arena.  That is a gigantic risk to take with people's retirement money.  Hopefully something comes out soon on the issue, but for now it seems like Islander fans will be force to wait and see if the new Hub plan might have an arena in it when the economic development council picks winners in September.  This could be a painfully quiet summer 

June 17, 2012

Coyotes New Lease is going to Court?

ESPN is reporting that the new lease that Glendale approved for the Coyotes will be sued by Goldwater Institute.
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- The conservative watchdog group Goldwater Institute has filed a lawsuit seeking to invalidate the Glendale City Council's vote to approve a lease agreement for Arena with a potential buyer of the Phoenix Coyotes.
The lawsuit was filed Wednesday in Maricopa County Superior Court on behalf of Glendale taxpayers Ken Jones and Joe Cobb, claiming last week's vote violated a 2009 court order requiring Glendale to provide all documents in negotiations between the city and a prospective owner to Goldwater in a timely manner.

We continue to hope that the city will construct a lawful deal that protects the interests of Glendale taxpayers. Without seeing critical exhibits contained in the arena management agreement ... it is not possible to determine the constitutional validity of the agreement.

 The question this arises is if the lease get's hold up in court will the NHL wait for the trail to come to a conclusion, or pickup and move out of the market.  If the Coyotes are forced to relocate that would take one threat away from the Islanders.

June 16, 2012

Hush Hush on Nassau's Hub Redevelopment Plan

Yesterday Nassau County submitted their redevelopment plan for the hub, but would not release the details of it.

Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano submitted an economic development plan to the state Friday for the Hub area, although it's unclear what the proposal envisions for the aging Nassau Coliseum .

The application, which Deputy County Executive Rob Walker refused to release because of "nondisclosure agreements with certain interested parties," was submitted to the Empire State Development Corp. as a "transformative project."

"It's going to be good," said Walker, who declined to elaborate on the proposal.

Nassau's submission will compete with other projects from across Long Island . The Long Island Regional Economic Development Council will select its top projects to compete with nine other regions for a total of $220 million in capital funds.

An additional $530 million, pooled from 12 state agencies, will be distributed by the state.

Kevin Law, co-vice chairman of the council, said he was anxious to review Nassau's proposal. The panel will make its decision in September.;JSESSIONID=777BA7C2EB19649AFAFD.3239?site=newsday&view=nassau_item&feed:a=newsday_5min&feed:c=nassau&feed:i=1.3785252&nopaging=1

 The fact they won't release the details scares me a little. It makes me think that this could be the first redevelopment plan without an arena in it. I wouldn't think they would make that drastic of a shift yet, but who knows.

June 15, 2012

Brooklyn or Bust

I have been saying for months now that I believe that unless something drastic happen that it is Brooklyn or bust for the Islanders.  Today there were several pieces written expressing that opinion.

Ever since the residents of Nassau County overwhelmingly voted No against another plan to get the Islanders a new arena, the future of the franchise on Long Island has been in doubt.
It has seemed all along that the brand new Barclays Center in Brooklyn is the only suitable option -- and some would argue that it's not suitable. Despite officials saying the arena could host hockey -- and it will this preseason when the Islanders play a game there -- its seating capacity for hockey would be the lowest in the NHL, even below Winnipeg.
But is that really it? I mean, there's no way that the NHL would let a team leave the New York Metro area, would they? Well if that's your hope than these tweets from B.D. Gallof of WFAN/CBS New York won't give you the warm and fuzzies.
This is not surprising yet it is all at the same time. It's not surprising because all along there haven't appeared to be any real options besides Brooklyn. From a black and white standpoint I thought it was always easy to see that it was Brooklyn or bust.

Its sad to think that the Islanders day in Nassau are nearing an end, but with a 3 billion dollar debt and a zoning too small to be profitable with an arena, there seem to be little choice left for the Islanders. 

June 13, 2012

Announcement of a Mall in Queens

On Thursday there will be an announcement of a mall and hotel to be built in Citi Fields parking lot.

Mayor Bloomberg is set to reveal the details for a 1 million-square-foot mall near Citi Field — a joint venture between Sterling Equities and Related Cos., sources told the Daily News.
Details for the first phase of Willets Point development, which will include a hotel and 30,000 square feet of retail space, will also be announced, sources said.

What does this mean for the Islanders? It means that the possibility of the Islanders building an arena in one of Citi field's parking lots looks bleak.  Back in 2010 there were murmurs of the Islanders and Wilpons talking about an arena in Willets Point.  It seems like Queens and the Wilpons are ready to start developing the area around the Mets and the Islanders don't seem to be involve.

June 11, 2012

NIFA Joking about the Coliseum

While George Marlin was complaining about Ed Mangano's plan to privatize Nassau County's sewer system he took a shot at the Nassau Coliseum.

 “This is a form of back-door borrowing,” he blasted. “Potential financial investors who invest money to public-private partnerships expect annual returns of 10 percent to 15 percent. To suggest that a private operator will achieve enough efficiencies to cover most of that cost and that assessments or user fees will increase no more than the rate of inflation—well, anyone who believes that, I have a coliseum in Hempstead I would like to sell them,” Marlin added

Well Mr. Marlin if you know that the coliseum is a dump and a money loser, why don't you actually become part of the solution instead  of making jokes.  If you and NIFA think things are bad in Nassau now just think how bad they will be with the lost of  revenue from the lost of the Islanders.

Odds are in the Barclays Center Favor

According to a report from Chris Botta, the Barclays Center believes that there is better than a 50% chance that the Islanders will be in Brooklyn come 2015.

 Nets CEO Brett Yormark has not held back from talking big about the #Isles landing in Brooklyn. Sources say Yormark, in recent meetings with clients and prospective partners, has said that the chances of the NYI playing in Brooklyn in 2015 are "better than 50%." To be clear, this does not mean the NYI are definitely moving there. You cannot blame Yormark, a relentless salesman, for his sales pitch. But as of now, Brooklyn stands as the Isles' best (only?) option in the New York area if they leave Nassau.

With Nassau financial crisis I would even consider Brooklyn the Islanders best option when taking Nassau into account.

June 10, 2012

Drop The Puck

Tomorrow I will be on Drop the Puck with Rob Sanderson, which starts at 10am.

Interview was pushed back 

June 4, 2012

Botta on Brooklyn

 Gary Bettman had been against the #Isles in Brooklyn, making his visit to the arena - as reported by Larry Brooks - notable, if only as a symbol of CW's frustrations with Nassau and Hempstead. All the recent Brooklyn talk, including Bruce Ratner's Coliseum cameo late in the season, says something about the NYI's limited options in the metro area. When Newsday, quick to gun down the first Brooklyn reports by this blogger and others 3 years ago, gets on board, the hype will hit overdrive.

June 3, 2012

Bettman Seen at the Barclays Center

Larry Brooks's of the New York Post reported that Gary Bettman was seen at the Barclays Center on Friday.  The fact that Bettman was at the arena could mean many things, but it should be seen as a positive to Islanders fans.  It puts pressure on Nassau when papers are reporting that Bettman is seen or talking to other New York locations.  In addition, it shows that the commissioner is exploring Brooklyn as a safety-net in case an arena can't be built elsewhere in the metropolitan area.  Like Brooks's said in his article.

    The Dodgers could have gone to Queens when they instead skedaddled to Los Angeles. It would be an everlasting shame if the Islanders were to go to Quebec (or Seattle) if they instead could move to Brooklyn.
It’s merely a subway ride, as our moles tell us the NHL commissioner took on Friday.

June 2, 2012

Is Belmont back in the Race for the Islanders?

A few months ago there were rumors about the Islanders staying in Nassau, but moving to Belmont as part of a casino development.  Those plans seemed all but dead when Governor Cuomo proposed his plan for the largest convention center in the country to build just down the road at Aqueduct.  The convention center was going to be built by Genting who in return wanted a class three casino with a 25 mile non compete on the site.  It seems like those plans have fallen through, which opens open the door for a Belmont deal again.  

Plans for a casino at Belmont Park , once considered dead and buried, may have received a breath of new life Friday when Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced that a proposal to build a convention center at nearby Aqueduct Racetrack has been scrapped.

State officials said plans for the convention center and casino would be shelved until voters decide the fate of legalized gambling in New York , likely by no earlier than fall 2013.

If successful, the state would accept bids for a "casino-convention center complex" somewhere in the New York metro area, although not necessarily at Aqueduct, said Cuomo spokesman Joshua Vlasto.

In the interim, Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano urged Cuomo to restart conversations with the Shinnecock Indian Nation for a Belmont casino.

"The Shinnecock Nation needs state and federal authorization to build a casino," Mangano said. "Once achieved, it has the potential to create thousands of jobs, increase tourism, slow dollars going to other states and help subsidize the cost of government so that we can hold the line on property taxes.";JSESSIONID=2A97669B870DA50C27217E82D5A09A07?site=newsday&view=politics_item&feed:a=newsday_1min&feed:c=politics&feed:i=1.3757441&part=1

With or without the Shinnecock Belmont could be the saving grace to keep the Islanders in Nassau County.  Later this month RFPS will be gathered that include retail, residential and a sports arena.  This may be the best chance for the county to keep their only professional team and Wang to get the development he wants in the county he wants.

Next month, the Empire State Development Corporation will release a request for proposals to develop 36 acres of state land at Belmont. Those plans could include retail development and a sports venue, such as a professional soccer stadium, said Sen. Jack Martins (R- Mineola ). 

Although the article does mention such as a soccer stadium, I'm sure that could easily become a hcokey arena, since Nassau has a professional hockey team already. 

(Aqueduct currently has a racino  with only slot machines.  Gentings was in talks with the state to open up a full scale casino with table games.)