New York Islanders Should Play 41 Home Games At Barclay's Center

New York Islander Fan Central | 5/17/2013 09:38:00 PM |
Garth Snow gave an audio interview on 5/17 on a likely quiet/not a lot of noise 7/5, and said the team is in the process of designing it's lockeroom at Barclay's Center.

He also again used the word he did not like to use in 2009................Rebuilding. 

Jack Capuano also gave an audio interview 5/17.
You announce the team is moving, sign a twenty five year iron-clad lease, that's it.

In a recent entry, I thew in a sarcastic comment that maybe the Islanders should also play ten games in Quebec to go with the six that were offered to the Coliseum in the Ratner bid, because that's what this is. 

The team should play at home, that's no longer the Nassau Coliseum whether that happens in one year or two years.  

There is a fan base to build, and a new home to hype, that's not at a downsized Nassau Coliseum.

No NHL team will ever play a regular season game in the Nassau Coliseum ever again after the New York Islanders leave.

NHL teams have to play in their home arena, unless they are given an outdoor game. This is not the era of neutral site games anymore which was very short-lived.

The Devils have never returned to East Rutherford, the Caps never went back to Landover once they moved inside the city limits. The Sabres never went back to the AUD. 

I do not agree at all with the New York Islanders playing six games at a downsized Nassau Coliseum.

Mitchell Theoret discusses his future with the New York Islanders here.

Lockout Over At New York Islander Fan Central/Moving Forward

New York Islander Fan Central | 5/12/2013 03:39:00 PM |
With the conclusion of the forty eight game cash-grab by the NHL/NHLPA for the New York Islanders the lockout of discussing the NHL team here is now officially over.

Charles Wang was in the front row cheering the NY Dragons in a playoff game, four days later the team was sold. Business decisions will be made from the head, not the heart. 

Obviously many things happened during the forty eight game whatever you want to call it. Some will have great bearing on 2013-14, others no so much.

What Worked/What Failed/What Was An Illusion During Forty Eight Games?  

* This team was 16-16-3 on March 30th. Despite the impressive stretch of losing only one regulation game, they still could not even win more than three games in a row over forty eight games. They were a great road team with the deck stacked against them with the opening/closing road trips.

* Chemistry sometimes happens out of nowhere, the first home Florida win where they finally held on in the third period seemed the beginning of the trends changing. 

* The chemistry that produced many of those low shot against, low scoring wins broke for good during the final five game in eight day streak with this team having nothing by the time they reached Carolina, and were lucky to secure a point in that game or Buffalo.

That's understandable because no team plays at that high a level forever, and especially under such pressure/travel but what was disturbing was Hickey was not the same dominating player, and had to be pulled from playoff games.

Brian Strait was not the steady player he was earlier before his injury.

The defensive chemistry never really returned. 

* This was a team that played forty eight games, who were tied or leading after all but seven  games, and even came back in three of them to earn points which is how you make the playoffs. It's the best example of progression, but no guarantee moving forward as we saw with the second half Islanders under interim head coach Capuano. It also proves what any defense can do as long as it can skate, forcing play at the opposition which was impossible with 2011-12/prior defenders.

* A little healthy depth was also something not seen here in countless years.

The Big Decisions: 
 The New York Islanders are a team supposedly moving, but may be returning to play six games in it's former home. That's an unheard of set of circumstances that reflects it's binding lease is hardly iron-clad, and it's business still very much unsettled.

The same can absolutely be said about Bridgeport with Ratner/Yormark offering an AHL team to their Coliseum bid. 

Jack Capuano-I'm not sure Jack Capuano is a lock to be back with his contract up. That will likely be decided immediately if a change is made. He has to be judged on all 48 games, if that decision were made on March 30th, the call for his dismissal would be very loud because if his team was simply successful at home they are a top seed. 

Fan Base: Another season 30th in attendance with only twenty four games to pay for hardly believed anything until it was time to start front-running for a few weeks. Even coming home to play the Flyers, the building was hardly filled, and that was with the usual strong Flyer turnout.

Are the New York Islander fans finally willing to pay hundreds of dollars for a weeknight ticket in November against the other conference that so many other markets do win or lose, or will it be 2002-03 where the fans expected ownership to keep the prices at 1980's levels, and stayed home when prices went up to support the players signed even with more playoff appearances? 

If you considered the forty eight games a true sign the franchise is on the right track 15,000 plus have to be in the stands for weeknight home games in October 2013. The excuses since 1989 end now. If Florida can fill the seats, the same people coming for a few weeks can do it over six months for once like everyone else does around this league.  

Rick DiPietro-The story changes because the CBA changed. Kevin Poulin sat on an NHL bench during his worst AHL season while DiPietro played eighteen games to expected results with rust a factor, but finally proving durable.

When the time came to select goaltenders for playoffs Poulin, and Anders Nilsson ill virtually all season  off two games started the final weekend were both called up before DiPietro with Nabokov either exhausted, hurt, or struggling badly.

It's a terrible sign moving forward for DiPietro's future regardless of his health, he may well have been the best alternative. 

Evgeny Nabokov-Will be a tough decision but given the NHL goaltending landscape he may not find a better situation. His play carried the club for most of the forty eight games. This is a goaltender who walked away from 24m in the KHL, was forced to play 82 games for 500k, and liked it so much he resigned.

Mark Streit-New York Statement On 1/16/13 For 2013-14 To Resign Mark Streit Now still applies. He should demand even more money for playing with a frequent healthy scratch in Ottawa, Matt Carker, or re-re cycled, Radek Martinek.

Someone's going to overpay, and give him a true top four defender as a partner. 

Brad Boyes-Points not withstanding, and a few nice defensive back-checks, he's not the answer nor should he be anywhere near the first line. There are better prospects waiting/better free agents if necessary, he created virtually nothing besides a good shot in a 6-1 loss in Pittsburgh. 

Matt Moulson-The bubble finally broke down the stretch, he had to be separated from Tavares. He'll be back but again can someone produce more to take focus off Tavares, and give him more room?

Okposo/Bailey-The production has to catch up to the hard work, we have all seen enough stretches of both.

Cizikas-Was a bigger overall factor than Nielsen. 

The NHL Moving Forward:
* Under Bettman's new unbalanced conference division format the 48 game New York Islanders lose out to Columbus/Detroit this year.

* The disparity between teams only becomes worse as payrolls go down one year, then head toward 80m with usual front-loading advantages by corporate teams in a sport all top players have NT/NMC. 

Bottom Line:
When you prove you can win over 82 games in six months, that's when things have changed. A five hundred club after thirty plus games in a forty eight game season has a long way to go.

There are a few signs this is now built to last, but until it happens it's nothing but words. 

Yes, the Islanders played even or better against a top seed, sure another point or two and they likely beat Montreal. One high stick against Ottawa they are likely a sixth or seventh seed.

Just words, it did not happen. Too bad we did not get a full 82 game season to find out.

Now we will. the lockout here is over.

Ratner Offering AHL Team For Coliseum With Islander Home Games?

New York Islander Fan Central | 5/05/2013 10:20:00 AM |
As much as folks (myself) want to move on from this subject, it's absolutely become something of critical importance to the future of the New York Islanders, and especially now the Bridgeport Sound Tigers.

Brett Yormark from the Nets confirmed an AHL team to the Coliseum on 5/10 in an audio interview 6:10 mark.

Why sign a twenty five year, so-called iron-clad lease, then have your new landlord offer your team play six games a year back in a down-sized Coliseum after less than seven months after the Brooklyn press conference? 

Is this how you really increase your fan base or start building one in Brooklyn or make money? Does five games at a downsized Coliseum every year become ten in Quebec with this so-called iron clad lease.

It also seems virtually everyone has an American Hockey League franchise all set to bring to the Nassau Coliseum.

Bruce Ratner:
If Bruce Ratner speaks for Charles Wang, his NHL team is moving, but coming back, an AHL team will be brought in to compete with the Sound Tigers or it will be Wang's team in Bridgeport moving.

There have been many entries here with comments on the Bridgeport Sound Tigers lease, with quotes from team President, Howard Saffan, that Charles Wang's AHL franchise will be in Bridgeport until 2021 with a binding lease, in a building Charles Wang operates/renovated this year.

So where is Mr Ratner getting his AHL team from?

Where are all these bidders getting their AHL franchises from besides Dolan?

Why Now? 
It's being decided by June or July at the latest, it's an election year, the bidding is over.

I know some of our teams fans besides being 30th in attendance, only care about owners throwing money out the window on free agents, but this is what pays for those front-loaded contracts.

So you better care a little because you are not getting a 2013 payroll at 1975 ticket prices. 

You Need An Updated Scorecard To Tell The Players:
There have been a few fascinating trades along the way too. 

Wang's Lighthouse/Marriott, Sublease, partner, Scott Rechler, in with Msg/Dolan bid? So much for them being best pals.

Dolan's former Msg President, Dave Checketts, who was practically escorted out of Msg in 2007 in with Bruce Ratner for John Davidson's whatever ceremony:
Just below it, the Dolan stench-maker was at full throttle. Davidson was given a suite for the day - but with one restriction: Members of the Blues' new New York-based ownership/management team, the men who used to work for the Garden, including ex-Garden president Dave Checketts, Ken Munoz and Mike McCarthy, were denied entrance.
That's right, an NHL team owner made it clear that fellow NHL team owners were not welcomed in Jimmy's Playhouse, er, Madison Square Garden, on the day their teams played each other.           
"A couple of weeks ago I heard I'd not be welcomed into the suite they were giving J.D.," said McCarthy. "And then I couldn't even buy tickets through the Garden. I eventually had to buy them on StubHub.
"I always took the high road; I never did anything but good for Madison Square Garden; I gave everything I had to the Garden, and for 23 years. And now I'm not even welcomed to set foot in the place. It's disturbing. I guess that's why I left in the first place."

I guess Mike Sielski was not interested in that story unless it's in a three minute video. 
Blumenfeld in with Smg, who you can bet want to keep management rights with Al D'Amato.

New York Sports and Entertainment LLC is partnered with Global Spectrum,a subsidiary of Comcast or Flyers owner Ed Snider, who's Smg company that manages the Coliseum with Isles under 2009 sublease.

Does Flyers owner Ed Snider have two bets down on this bid? He got a new AHL home under construction with taxpayer money.

At this time former Msg President, Bob Gutkowski does not seem to be a part of this, but here is his latest resume here.

Anyone notice no one is talking baseball stadium yet on the rest of Don Monti's HUB.

Nothing Could Be More Personal For Dolan Family:
When current Msg President Hank Ratner says It's Personal you better believe it. 
“Said simply, our group is uniquely qualified to create a world-class destination for Long Island,” said Madison Square Garden Company President and CEO Hank Ratner. “For us, it’s not just business. It’s personal.”

The Nassau Coliseum, and the New York Islanders were Islander fan, Charles Dolan's, first choice of hockey's franchises to own. The New York Islanders were Cablevision's signature television property when they were trying to get started long ago.

Charles Dolan signed an agreement with John Pickett to purchase the New York Islanders. 

Charles Dolan kicked Msg off Cablevision in those days.

For Ranger fan, James Dolan,  it's revenge for the continuing unexpected television contract payments in Brooklyn, a chance to wipe New York Islander history off the Long Island map forever, expanding his own Msg branding officially into Nassau County,  and perhaps force a failed New York Islander brand in Brooklyn out of business at some future point, again saving on huge future cable contract payments.

Kind of circumvents Wang's idea of keeping practices on Long Island, and commuting besides Iceworks.

The Rangers will be having open practices at a James Dolan operated Coliseum as the official home team, no doubt future home exhibition games.

No Mr Wang, the Islanders will not be permitted to continue on Long Island in any capacity as the home team. 

Nassau Coliseum:
One thing that can be written is the Coliseum with enough extra's thrown in is considered self-sustaining to the many people that bid for it.

Considering all the modern arena's bleeding red ink, and this is not the entire HUB that Don Monti is Master Developer of is surprising.
Ed Mangano: 
Frankly put, Ed Mangano won huge, and is correct about one of his problems now being solved.

Someone will pay hundreds of millions for the privilege of giving Nassau County money.
He could care less about the Islanders, and will quickly name the RFP winner giving Nassau hundreds of millions as part of his re-election campaign promise kept. 

The taxpayers (on paper) will not pay one dime, Mangano can start honoring the AHL Long Island Rangers as Nassau County's official home team in the new Msg Live Zone as soon as he approves Dolan's Msg/Nassau East which likely will happen no matter what Ratner, Blumenfeld offers.

Cablevision, Newsday, News12LI, Msg media can break anyone on Long Island, and have the money to do it, this is their home area, not Bruce Ratner, or any other bidder.

Anyone really think Ed Mangano wants the Dolan's who defeated Mike Bloomberg, and have fought virtually every sports team/channel as an emeny in an election year on Long Island?

This is not the Lighthouse or Town of Hempstead with Kate Murray approval required or everyone other team who got paid by taxpayers for keeping their team where it is. It's also not the entire HUB.

In other words, construction will happen as soon as the New York Islanders are out, with Charles Wang's approval. 

The entire HUB is Donald Monti's problem, who has to deal with Town Of Hempstead/Murray zone.

Could Mangano's selecton committee actually turn down Msg? Never underestimate Nassau County incompetence, but in this case that's an incredible long-shot.

Charles Wang: 
He controls the Marriott, the abatement permanently, and until 2015 has right of first refusal "It's a situation where he really controls the site until 2015," when the team's lease at the arena expires, Burman said.

Long Island Busniess News August 2012 
Wang’s newest lease for the Coliseum signed last year gives him a say in what eventually gets built around the rest of the property. The Hub’s master developer will have to build a tiered parking to make up for any of the 6,500 parking spots lost, and Wang can reject any plan he deems would “adversely affect the use and operation” of his Long Island Marriott hotel and the Coliseum.
In short until 2015, Wang can reject any plan approved (including Ratner's) but if he wants out of his Islanders lease earlier it may be something he has to trade.

Wang rejects Dolan's plan if given RFP good luck finding any New York Islander telecast or pregame until 2031. Say goodbye to any Newsday coverage of the team anywhere. 

It seems for now Ratner has more say over the New York Islanders than Charles Wang, who's hotel is likely as easily available for purchase as the Sound Tigers could be very soon. 

New York/New York Islander Fan Central Notables

New York Islander Fan Central | 4/26/2013 02:35:00 PM |
Aside from Griffin Reinhart's foot surgery that is expected to keep him out six weeks or Mitchell Theoret, perhaps a prospect/player signing, expect a very quiet time at New York Islander Fan Central unless there is something to write about regarding 2013-14 which is the focus here.

The lockout ends here with the conclusion of the forty eight game season/playoffs. I have made clear to my readers several times this website may not be for them at this time.

The prospect site on blogger is set with contract status for Bridgeport/Islander prospects. 

IIHF 2013 World Championships begin May 3rd for perhaps a player/prospect or two. 

It's also time to get quiet about the twitter/coverage comments on poor television/newspaper coverage, which frankly I failed to keep my promise about on 1/2/13 when the season was cancelled here.

As for the Nassau Coliseum development if you care about Dolan bidding for the building, and bringing in their AHL team to cut the Isles youth season ticket base to nothing, I've done my part, and continue to fill in credible information as it becomes available. 

Now it's your choice to speak up, not before Ed Mangano quietly hands the RFP to them. 

Nothing else I can really write after most of what was expected happened, if you care about the coverage disparities. I have also done my part to try.

You have a few life-times of entries here to guide you, and a mailing list back to 2000 with daily articles.

Now it's your turn. 

If Charles Wang, Michael Picker, Howard Saffan & Garth Snow have something to tell the public about the club's business or a players future, they have a website/Neulion to break all their own news directly.

Folks know where I stand in terms of Charles Wang's ownership after thirteen years. No matter what he does moving forward nothing is going to change my total support for him, which includes moving the team out of New York, and breaking his iron-clad/binding lease in Brooklyn.

I have done enough entries explaining why.
Just to be clear because I'm receiving many e-mails wanting to send money  to advertise here. New York Islander Fan Central is a non-profit, no advertising, no link exchange website.

No interest in writing anywhere else or page-views.
No interest in anything but professional journalism with quotes. (no sourced based information)
As always no announcements regarding the future of New York Islander Fan Central will be made with each entry perhaps being the last. I respect my followers, and do not wish to waste anyone's time so that's as honest as I can be regarding this.

Whatever happens as always will have nothing to do with the team, it's record or where it plays hockey games, never has or will. 

I simply never know if I wish to stop completely.

In April 2009 everything that can be written on this subject was.  

The promise made was this website, hosted by blogger will be viewable until October 2013 until the domain needs to be renewed.

If it's renewed at that time an announcement will be made that the this website will be viewable until October 2014. 

In terms of 2013-14, if there is any writing here at all, the focus is mostly going to be hockey centric after the draft/free agency.

How someone plays, what they are quoted as saying, hopefully into a camera so we can make up our own minds.

Thank You Very Much............

Bridgeport Final Notables....More Friction With Msg?

New York Islander Fan Central | 4/23/2013 11:32:00 PM |
Ct Post: Michael Fornabio has the season wrap with some player, coach comments, and the list of the 2013-14 contract updates.

NYIFC Comments:
As a rule, I stay ahead of this on the prospect blog for this website in terms of the contracts. I believe Ty Wishart is again an RFA at age 25 come June 2013. Mr Fornabio writes he is UFA.

Hartford Courant: Reports the Ct Whale will re brand itself back to the Hartford Wolfpack and that the Sound Tigers objected to a Connecticut Wolf Pack rebranding.

NYIFC Comnents: 
Things are seemingly not very good between Dolan's organization vs Charles Wang's. 

Obviously it was insulting for Msg to re-brand it's AHL team to a state that included where the Sound Tigers play to begin with. 

This would explain the Sound Tigers registering two domains on January 2nd blocking a move to Ct Rangers until 2018.

Look out in two years when the Wolfpack lease expires, and Dolan has Coliseum development rights via Mangano's RFP.

New York:
As I wrote on January 2nd, the NHL was cancelled in terms of this website, and that's the way it will remain. 

Having written this I respect the overwhelming majority who feel otherwise, hope they have a great time moving forward, and that they respect my position on this which is the minority today. (not so much on 1/2/13)

Everyone should respect each others choices. I do not consider a 48 game season, a complete NHL schedule, and saw one in 1995.

Yes, I'm flat out thrilled the New York Islanders season tickets to the NHL lottery have been revoked next week. I'll write that much going into the 2013 draft.

Bridgeport's 2012-13 Season Concludes...Moving Forward

New York Islander Fan Central | 4/22/2013 07:51:00 AM |
The Sound Tigers richly deserved elimination came on Friday night at their own hands.

Not much that can be written that was not in the entry on Scott Pellerin being replaced, even though he is under contract for 2013-14. I would guess unless he has another job in mind, and the Islanders are willing to let him go he will be back.

Perhaps it was the grind of Nino Niederreiter's first healthy full season, combined with injuries to his line-mates?

Nino Niederreiter played his mostly injured NHL season in 2011-12, almost a full year younger than John Tavares did. 

Forgetting the statistics, Nino Niederreiter was not as involved in the play as he was before his agent spoke in January. Still on paper overall he had an excellent first full season.

For Brock Nelson, Matt Donovan this season was a major step forward. John Persson, Johan Sundstrom had an excellent showing. David Ullstrom faces some tough competition moving forward, along with Aaron Ness, who had a much better year than his plus/minus shows.

Kirill Kabanov, who scored in the season finale, will get a pass based on his injury, but he received criticism from Pellerin. Jason Clark was not a success story, nor was Mike Halmo.

Only management in New York knows where Ryan Strome fits in 2013-14.

The Ct Post will release a list of who's restricted/free agent in a day or two. 

We sure have come a long way quickly since Mike Mottau, Steve Staios, Mark Eaton, Milan Jurcina

Depth is a funny thing, you can go from none to plenty very quickly. 

Bridgeport is basically set for 2013-14 in this department with the signings of Pedan, Mayfield, Dalhuisen, with Ness, Reinhart (Juniors or NHL 13-14) Donovan, Cantin or Calvin deHaan.

Ty Wishart seems on the outside in terms of a paper roster with Jon Landry.

Anyone on the outside of this mix likely will not be retained, it costs nothing to qualify Mark Katic in Europe.

To play many of these defenders in a third pairing would not be the best use of their talent which is another problem-see Anton Klementyev. 

The math is not good for Brenden Kichton, who's a big risk if management decides to let that offense re-enter the NHL draft. There are more defenders in college, and CHL who must be signed by summer 2014.

If Kichton is signed by another club, providing NHL-level offense, management will face well earned criticism, this is not losing Jared Spurgeon, who is a descent NHL player.

There is another draft class coming in June, given all the signed defenders in the organization now, plus all the ones due to be signed next summer, there is not enough room.

Yes folks on paper  Brenden Kichton is a better prospect than Pedan or Mayfield, or even Aaron Ness when he signed out of Minnesota, or Donovan out of Denver, he's a mile better than Mike Dalhuisen.

The story of Justin Mapletoft was discussed here already, that's where Kichton is now.

The day will come where Travis Hamonic will get his offer of close to thirty million from hometown Winnipeg if his offense develops, or fifteen million if it does not. Why is he turning that down?  His 2013 RFA summer coming up will tell us part of what's coming.

The days of Andrew MacDonald making 500k are coming to an end, someone's giving him three million plus a year if even if he shows no offensive progression, and much more if he does.

Brian Strait is a happy man with a three year contract, Thomas Hickey (RFA) will likely want even more. Joe Finley is signed for 2013-14.

Good news is if history has taught us anything it's there is no such things as not enough depth, especially in an organization with a long history of leading the league in man games lost.

With Miko Koskinen signing in Europe for the next two years, if New York wants to develop a goaltender it has to be Anders Nilsson.

Kevin Poulin (RFA) did not have a good year, but no goaltender did in front of the second highest goals allowed team in the AHL.

Rick DiPietro's progression, cannot come at the price of developing a goaltender unless DiPietro can make the adjustment to being a backup which is asking too much for a goalie who desperately needs to work off rust.

A lot will be decided on if Nabokov returns with Tim Thomas an option.

DiPietro's finally showed his first real sign he is healthy playing eighteen games, there is no working off rust as an NHL/AHL backup or splitting time with another goalie in a league where teams largely play during weekends.

Of course the Islanders can simply keep DiPietro as the full time Bridgeport starter, and not care about developing a goaltender. Many organizations go the same route once they had their NHL starter.

Martin Brodeur, Johan Hedberg took the Devils to the Stanley Cup finals a year ago. Dwayne Roloson the conference finals before that.  Anyone believe the Flyers, with Bryzgalov, Mason or Pittsburgh with Vokoun, or Rangers with former Islander Biron, are playing a huge premium on developing a backup goaltender in their AHL system? 

How would you like to be an AHL goalie in Vancouver's system right now?