11/7/08

Islander Insider/Ownership Notable

New York Islander Fan Central | 11/07/2008 02:25:00 PM
Newsday: Greg Logan's one page Islander Insider Friday has a few words on Scott Gordon's family living in Atlanta full-time despite the fact he has coached in Providence and now New York.

Alan Walsh, Miroslav Satan's agent talks about Ted Nolan not using his client properly last season which was why his Islander production declined along with making sure his comments were not a criticism of general manager Garth Snow.

NYI Fan Central Comments:
Mr Walsh can say these things about the Islanders former coach but fact is Satan's play in Buffalo made his departure addition by subtraction for practically everyone associated with the Sabres at that time.

Nolan last season denied reports about friction and credited Satan for playing with a knee injury that was supposed to keep him out for eight weeks, agents sell players to the public but there is more than one person's side here.

This is also Satan's former coach in Buffalo.

Too many nights the last two years Satan looked like a passenger for this team, including the playoffs and the blame goes on everyone. I hope he does great for Pittsburgh, he is off to a strong start but that does not change what happened here.

Notable:
I always kind of laugh when folks claim Charles Wang saved this team from moving.

He did save a lot of things with some fantastic efforts that cannot be praised enough but from outright moving? No.

Since when did Howard or Ed Milstein ever threaten to move this team once Howard Milstein lost his scoreboard fight?

The County/Smg leases until 2014-2015 in those days made moving impossible and the cable contract that provided over three hundred million dollars through 2030 made that a non-starter for any relocation talk. No one walks away from that kind of revenue.

Mr Wang has done a ton of great things here and no doubt I will miss listing a few here starting with spend a hundred a thirty million plus in the summer of 2002 where the Milstein's spent fifteen million on payroll. That began the first year with taking on Roman Hamrlik's contract.

Mr Wang bought into a new Islander-only affiliate for prospects, bailed out Roy Boe again saving the Sound Tigers a few years later. He settled lawsuits with Smg and has for the most part aside of a few blurbs in articles about relocating to Suffolk a few years ago has never done anything but remain loyal to owning this franchise.

He also added some great improvements to the Coliseum, has been first class with the alumni and has gone above and beyond to promote this club, sustaining no doubt big losses with a lease that does not even give him the full ticket revenue, no concessions or parking.

Mr Wang has also been a first class individual standing up and taking the blame for the club's failures, being visible as owner of this club in the community and has done countless great things under his tenure along with the Bridgeport community including the initiatives with the Chinese affiliation and the Dragons.

To his credit he has remained an optimist and kept reinventing what he is trying to do in a sea of pessmisism.

New York Islander fans have had unprecedented access to this team and information from it with his website and ITV which his vision brought to the NHL.

I also greatly respect the effort to create a new generation of Islander fans even if I disagree with the LI campaign in a New York Hockey market where there is simply not a great deal of interest in any of the three teams against the major sports.

The owners before were never visible and that includes John Pickett.

Having written that who is to say that another owner may not have come along and bought the franchise and done some of the same things? One group backed out at a time before Mr Wang involving Bob Gutkowski.

Long-term if the Lighthouse is not approve Mr Wang can opt out of the Nassau County lease. That does not mean the Smg or Cable contract lease would be voided and to Mr Wang's credit he has not discussed what would happen one way or another or made any kind of threat.

It has to be noted a Lighhouse Project only includes a ten year extension of the Coliseum lease to 2025.

Give Mr Wang the highest marks for what he has done and with leaving the Dragons with local ownership when he sold the club recently, however please lets tone down any talk the club would no longer be here without him.
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I did a little reading the other day and I have a little theory on why the Times has virtually nothing to do with the New York Islanders anymore.

Howard Milstein as of 2007 became a significant stockholder in the Times ownership writing opinion articles for the paper here.





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