Al Arbour Remembered at Funeral In Florida

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/31/2015 05:52:00 PM | Comments

Wang Wins Bid To Own/Operate Twin Rinks

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/31/2015 12:30:00 PM | |Comments
Long Island Business News: Reports Charles Wang has won the bidding for bankrupt Twin Rinks in Eisenhower Park for eight million dollars.  

NYIFC Comments: 
Eight million for a rink that ran over-budget to fifty million dollars that's a year old?

Money talks, and no the bankruptcy sale process is a simple bid after qualified parties are selected who can operate a facility, this was not Nassau County's decision to make.

Wang made a nice statement hosting prospect camp there for a week.

Wang also beat out Ed Blumenfeld (lawsuit with Ratner over Coliseum) who had Bob Nystrom/Gerry Hart's support/SoNo in Norwalk Ct.

Hart backed off his bid in 2001 for Iceworks which Wang won for a 1.4 million bid, and endorsed Wang's efforts at the time.

Do Agreements Matter? 
I suggest folks again read the Cantiague Park Agreement reported on the Islanders website on 6/5/15 

The agreement to renovate Cantiague, and construct offices, was a settlement for Wang to get back almost five million dollars in Lighthouse project money in escrow, my impression is Wang is obligated per that ten year lease agreement to move the Islander practices there beginning 12/31/15 with team offices to be completed by February regardless of Twin Rinks or Iceworks.

Or not.

All we have is what was reported in terms of the agreement with Nassau regarding Cantiague. Why is Mangano going to let him out of that agreement?

What happens could come down to how embarrassed Mangano/County are over the Twin Rinks fiasco where he gave his state of the County speech. 

Ok. Twin Rinks, Cantiague, Ice Works.

Guess he did this for the real estate too?

Let's see a re-branding from Twin Rinks to Al Arbour Rinks at Eisenhower Park. No disrespect to the Ferraro brothers.

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/29/2015 04:04:00 PM | Comments

Al Arbour: A Total Stranger's Passing Can Make A Grown Man Cry

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/28/2015 08:22:00 PM | Comments
Al Arbour's loss today made my cry, it hurts. 

What can I do but speak from the heart? I have lost family recently to dementia, and seeing the images of Al Arbour during this past year knew the agony he was going through because we experienced it daily. 

I knew this day was going to come very soon, and was expecting it to the point of checking even earlier this morning before I posted my entry.

There would be relief when there was no update, but it was always in the back of my mind.

Today became the day. 

I'm glad he's no longer suffering, and would think often of what he was enduring every day with his family.  How cruel that a man who brought such joy to so many lived his final days in agony, it was so horribly unfair.

Al Arbour could make total strangers like myself who never met him cry over his passing like he was my family. To an entire generation of sports fans, I believe for some that's how special this man and Bill Torrey still are to so many people. 

How these men worked together was something so rare and unique, it resonated all the time by the players words over the years.

This franchise under these men were a family with bonds that will never be broken.

The players won those Stanley Cups, and you would read how the New York Islanders could beat you any way you wanted to play.

But the truth is they also beat those teams with character, and heart, not just talent, instilled by two very special individuals, the kind rarely seen.

I could tell a million funny stories and have here over the years. Write about all the cups/wins, great games, but today is not for numbers or records.

Today we mourn the loss of Al Arbour, who will be remembered forever.
It hurts badly.

RIP Al Arbour,
Thank You so much.
My deepest condolences to your family. 


New York Islander Fan Central | 8/28/2015 12:00:00 PM | Comments

Too painful for words. I'm sorry.

9/23 Vs Devils Televised/Media Notables

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/28/2015 10:22:00 AM | Comments
A year ago I wrote the Dolan's would not permit the Islanders preseason to be televised and the Devils game was after the 2013 game was a blacked out subject entirely to even discuss. I'm also aware they shockingly moved two Ranger games to secondary stations for Islander games during last season.

I do not know why that happened.

Of course we all know the long, long history on this subject and they will never release the ratings data for all four stations to break down the ratings disparity/damage for Msg/Msg+/Msg2/Msg+2 non HD.

My impressions are they have hidden the Islanders successfully for so long it's not a big deal anymore to them, and it's likely more one hand at Msg is not working with the other (as the Coliseum's final regular season game post-game was not aired) or it was stock related.

Bottom line our team win or lose will be mostly hidden on television and in print under the Dolan umbrella with at best glass half empty coverage.

Despite the New York Islanders historical strong fan support in NYC:

No professional sports team team has less local media, or only one full time writer who's employed by the owner of another NHL team to do the bare minimum with the glass half empty at best, with something negative in virtually every single article.

The New York Islanders as always will have their narrative defined by other NHL teams or part time professional local writers. Mike Vaccaro of the Post will show up once since 1978 to comically attempt to define the teams history.

Will our fans be smart enough to see through this? Not likely between Mr Yormark seemingly desperate to be the only person among nine NY/NJ counterparts in his job to brand Brooklyn every chance he can, and lose revenue, plus Msg more than happy to keep the New York Islanders publicity out of Manhattan. 

Yormark Comments Seem To Contradict Ratner's Lease

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/26/2015 08:43:00 AM | Comments
On 8/9/13 the official lease agreement for the Nassau Coliseum was agreed to and signed by Bruce Ratner. The terms regarding an AHL team are on page 24.
On 9/20/13 Nassau County reviewed Bruce Ratner's final lease agreement. Page 2 makes clear an AHL team will serve as the Coliseum's anchor tenant.
So why is Brett Yormark giving the impression  that he does not need a core tenant at the Nassau Coliseum on 8/5/15 comparing the Coliseum to the O2 in London? 
NYIFC Comments: What is Mr Yormark talking about?  "We might have some minor league sports", his employer has a signed lease agreement that mandates an AHL team as anchor tenant until 2028......


He can do his attempted Brooklynising all he likes which has failed with the Nets, and will never be accepted by the NEW YORK Islander fans which had forty percent of it's season tickets come from inside the NYC limits in July 2011.

And yes, I found a mild Brooklyn chant during one game at Msg on 1/24/14 so I was wrong about that past statement of never hearing one cheer for the Nets. 

For now Mr Ratner's late on his mid-August groundbreaking with no announced date. Ratner owes Prokhorov 31 million dollars per the SEC and that deadline has been pushed back already twice to 9/8.

Mr Yormark is not announcing a ground breaking date. 

Is it possible Nassau let's this go through with no hockey team or anchor tenant? Not if the paper work means anything it's printed on.

I'm well aware of Mr Ratner board ties (also in Brooklyn) to Sloan Kettering. That's a huge deal separate of the money being put in by NEC/Ratner for the Coliseum bringing in over a hundred and forty million dollars (construction) so you can bet Mangano has no issue (at Joel's concert with Cuomo) who likely is providing state funds for a future parking garage which will bring even more development.  

Did it change the Coliseum anchor tenant agreement is the big question which is 40 hockey games for an AHL team?

Let's compare the Sound Tigers revenue vs 140 million dollars in construction for Sloan Kettering? 

PTO Contracts For AHL Players & Eric Boulton

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/24/2015 05:11:00 PM | |||Comments

NYIFC Comments:
 All paperwork transactions which let's the team dress the minimum veterans during some preseason games who are on AHL contracts before they are released from the PTO.

Boulton for a little reference falls into the 2010 plan with Dean McAmmond, Manny Legace, Anders Eriksson, Krys Kolanos and Joel Martin needed to fill out a lineup card. At best Boulton lands an AHL contract for his efforts like the players above. The Islanders getting into the practice of playing two games a day in different locations makes this necessary.

Ratner/Prokhorov Ownership Stakes Leave New York/Coliseum/Bridgeport Future As Guesswork

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/24/2015 04:44:00 AM | Comments
I have no answers, only guesses, however there are some facts to base views upon.

Let's be clear NYS owns the land under the Barclay's Center, Mr Ratner/Prokhorov own the rights to operate the facility. 

Mikhail Prokhorov owns 80 percent of the Nets and 45 percent of Barclays Center.
Bruce Ratner owns 55 percent of Barclay's Center and 20 percent of the Nets.

Prokhorov wants to buyout Ratner's stake in both, and is exploring selling everything if he buys out Ratner.

Mr Ratner owes Mr Prokhorov 31 million dollars or equity in the team/arena as part of the cash-calls on the teams payroll/luxury tax losses for the last three years. That deadline has been pushed back twice to 9/8.

Prokhorov is also a minority partner in the Coliseum renovation.

One guess would be that a Coliseum renovation ground breaking for mid-August (now 8/24) will not happen until Bruce Ratner & Mikhail Prokhorov resolve their issues.

Mr Yormark made clear on 8/4 "The whole sponsorship profile and program is something that has been taking up a lot of our time," he says, "and I feel very confident that by the end of the month we'll have a naming rights partner."

The articles first paragraph said a Coliseum groundbreaking will take place later this month.

My math says that means this week or 8/31.

That ties directly into the Bridgeport Sound Tigers future status.

A full sale of the Barclay's Center/Nets to Prokhorov from Ratner is a huge game changer, and very likely to happen sooner than later.

Ratner is developing his Pacific Park real estate around the Barclay's center, and will be for the next decade or longer.

A sale could also mean heads quietly start rolling among Ratner's people still working at Barclay's given how badly the basketball operations/losses have been or people stay in place until Prokhorov sells everything at some future time if he decides to no longer wants to own a team/arena.

No, I do not see the Nets moving under any circumstances despite their massive losses. Mr Prokhovov is done spending over the luxury tax limit so losses on the basketball operation will go down. They will finally move their practices facilities out of New Jersey the same month the Islanders new offices in Cantiague Park will be ready in Feb 2016.

The only thing Mikhail Prokhorov has ever definitively said about the New York Islanders was he was not interested in purchasing the hockey team. (2011)

What does that mean for the New York Islanders?
If you believe Wang's iron-clad 25 year lease agreement  is binding on all future owners of the Barclay's center for the next 25 years it means absolutely no problem for the Islanders which Gary Bettman somewhat confirmed in Feb 2015 unless an owner of the New York Islanders purchased the Barclay's Center.

Bettman 2015:
“Whatever agreement Charles Wang made has been assumed in full. (It’s) not based on a change in ownership. I know (new minority owner) Scott Malkin is very excited about playing at Barclays.”

Mr Bettman did not say a word about ownership of Barclays. What happens to that agreement if Ratner sells his majority stake in Barclay's to Prokhorov, who flips everything entirely to another party at some future point?

To write whoever owns the Barclay's Center inherits Wang-Ratner agreement reads nice but that would still be a guess, and yes I read the articles the Islanders agreement may be a problem for selling the Barclay's center so that's a good thing for our team's future because we want the agreement to be binding on all hockey owners and arena operators. 

Of course in October 2012 Wang said he would remain sole owner of the New York Islanders. 

At that same press conference Gary Bettman completely shot down any expansion for the NHL so these days I'm not that sold on 2012 statements.

Yes, we know the teams future practice facility lease agreements at Cantiague Park.

We have zero guesses to make on where the incoming 2016-17 majority owners stand on anything based on one press conference, for now they have their own payments to make before they should say anything.

But when they become majority owners there are going to bring in their own people. 

Let's get the very minor issue out of the way:
No idea how a Wang-Smg sublease lawsuit plays out. My guess is Wang stopped paying his yearly 3.5 million in 2012 when Smg brought in Jerry Goldman as Coliseum general manger (see archives) to do what Wang paid for which was to book events in a facility he was getting all revenue in the sublease. Smg moved Goldman to Minnesota in August.

That's a guess but who cares.

We have more important things to guess about. 

Kevin Poulin Resigned

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/11/2015 05:07:00 PM | Comments

Matt Carkner Signs Two Year AHL Contract

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/11/2015 04:42:00 PM | Comments
NYIFC Comments: Very unusual unless this involves a coaching role which I had some speculation on when he was at Ice Works during prospects camp.

Expect Sound Tigers Decision By Coliseum Ground Breaking/Notables

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/07/2015 05:14:00 PM | Comments
Folks, let's be clear, Wang's Bridgeport lease language to operate Webster Bank Arena was specifically changed as a condition to him taking over in 2011. He has to supply a professional hockey league team, not the AHL. 


 Mike Bossy is also apparently leaving NYI business operations/Msg Network.

 It is with great pleasure that of TVA Sports announces the arrival of Mike Bossy on air. Starting this fall, the former striker of New York Islanders will be the analysis of games of the National Hockey League and will also join the Dave Morissette live broadcast, as a collaborator. Considered one of the best players that have evolved within the National Hockey League, experience the game will bring an extraordinary contribution to the programming of TVA Sports.

"I am very honored to join TVA Sports. After spending 10 seasons in the National Hockey League and have evolved with great players, I can assure you there is no other team that I would have associated. I am proud to make my contribution to TVA Sports has done an outstanding job in his first season as the official broadcaster of the NHL, "said the new TVA Sports analyst.

"It is an honor for our chain to welcome Mike Bossy our team. Mike was one of the most prolific scorers in the history of the National Hockey League, added Louis Philippe Neveu, executive producer of hockey on TVA Sports.

Let's Keep This Short: 2015-16 New York Islanders

New York Islander Fan Central | 8/03/2015 02:45:00 AM | Comments
1. There are thirteen signed forwards, and Brock Nelson. No one else is being signed unless there is a trade, players are hurt in camp, or someone fails to win a job among Bridgeport/prospects.

The roster spots at this time are completely filled. 

2. They do not need another Eaton, Staios, Mottau ect signing to add depth on defense that will not help the team. The defenders in UFA have struggled or want too much money, it's not last summer here with a defensive roster clearly not capable of competing. The prospects are a year older/closer and need a look in camp.

3. The Boston Bruins finished fourteen games over five hundred with ninety six points, and failed to qualify for the playoffs.  Granted two less games/regulation ties, but the 82-83 Islanders miss these playoffs, and the 79-80 Islanders are so far out of contention they never trade for Goring or go on a huge winning streak which got them to a ninety one point playoff spot.

The days of sixteen of twenty one teams qualifying for the playoffs are long gone. In this conference half the teams will not qualify at all, and if this team continues it's five hundred stretch the final two months of last season it's likely not returning to the playoffs unless it has an Ottawa 19-1-1 streak in them.

Whoever qualifies for the playoffs has to be a very good hockey team or it's not going to happen, and it's likely going to have less shoot out wins which was usually a positive.

New York's schedule in the second half is horrendous again with little rest.

Bottom line as I have written most years the 2015-16 New York Islanders can finish 1st or 30th.
The rest is just a lot of useless words.