Owner Speaks on Arena Issue: Surcharge On Tickets To Finance Construction

New York Islander Fan Central | 7/22/2010 09:04:00 PM |
Toronto Sun: The Owner has finally spoken on the arena issue, after two years and nineteen days, and the teams lease which expires in 2014 along with who controls the revenue from the facility.

Among the Highlights:
Under no circumstances would the team play here when their lease runs out in 2014.

"As you know, I've invested $200 million to buy the team. At that time I made a commitment to invest $100 million towards the development of a new arena. In addition, I still fully intend to invest at least another $100 million in leading the development of the arena."

"It's about sustaining the NHL -- it's about our team for the long term ... which today it is NOT," he said.

"We are the only team in the NHL that does not control its arena and the only team that does not receive the non-hockey-related revenues from the facility in which they play. For the sake of comparison, in Calgary, they do not go to the Stampede Board, they go to the Flames," said Marcaccio and then revealed that the team had lost $9 million in each of the last two seasons.

NYIFC Comments:
For our less astute followers, this was about Edmonton Oilers owner Daryl Katz, as he unloaded on Edmonton City Council this week, who play in the third oldest NHL arena, right behind the Nassau Coliseum, the Canadian media does not call the Oilers home arena a dump, nor does the Detroit News/Free Press about the Wings home.

Cooler heads have prevailed in the last day or so as Mr Katz talked up how many hundreds of millions is he willing to spend, while Edmonton politicians are considering a surcharge on tickets to partly pay for financing.

However Mr Katz, is not budging on a new arena, he wants Edmonton to pay for part of it, and he wants full control of revenue from all events.

Edmonton's version of Smg is Northlands, who Mr Katz made clear have to be out, some may recall this building was once named Northlands Coliseum.

As everyone knows it's not NYIFC style to put up a somewhat misleading headline, or article, however there was an obvious purpose behind this that our team is not alone in some of these issues.

Also that this day is likely coming very soon for Charles Wang.

Obviously this is how Mr Wang could have played things from day one of his ownership. AP: for some reason does not recognize the Cablevision Garden as the league's oldest facility.

Now it get's tricky here, Oiler/Canadian media fans, are not going to take Mr Katz comments and twist them (like Charles Wang exploring his options) into a threat to leave, despite Katz very real interest in a Hamilton facility, plus folks able to connect the dots as he has put up a construction deadline.

The Edmonton Sun/Journal need the Oilers to sell newspapers, the loss of the Oilers would be a major hit to their papers so a far different spin than it is here.

I thought folks would be very interested in the similarities, this was my intention behind posting this entry in this manner.
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Meanwhile on the New York front, the Shinnecock's if they receive federal recognition this year (likely despite being blocked for now) have announced their intention to decide among thirty possible locations by end of calendar year.

Considering they have said they will only go where they are wanted, and it's obvious TOH/Hofstra do not want them, that will likely put an end to any discussion of a Casino on the Coliseum site.

Which leaves Kate Murray having her town meetings, approving FPC limited development (after dragging things out as long as possible), having hearings, and finally telling Wang-Rechler, we have done our part, yes or no?

In short, a project re-done at taxpayer expense only to force someone to say no because it does not work financially.

Perhaps Charles Wang and Mr Katz should have a long talk at the next BOG meeting because make no mistake, and I will write again, the day is likely coming where Charles Wang will have to say many of these things.

For those wondering, Tom Gulotta's final act as Nassau Executive was to slap a surcharge on Islander hockey tickets/other events, which was not to finance a new Coliseum.

Hopefully Ed Mangano is also following some of this too, because he is going to have to break the bad news soon about how taxpayers need to step up for a new Coliseum to preserve Kate Murray's suburbia.


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