Nobody knows where the New York Islanders will call home in a couple of seasons when their lease at the Nassau Coliseum is up. The people of Nassau County had the chance to make the voice hear on a new arena and they voted no, the latest in a long line of rebutted attempts by owner Charles Wang to get a new home for his team.
Since then, the future of the organization has been murkier than a swamp. That kind of uncertainty doesn't help Garth Snow build a franchise that can win in the long run (as if he needs any more obstacles).
However one of the possible options for a new home is further down Long Island toward Manhattan and the new Barclays Center going up in Brooklyn to host the NBA's Nets. That building isn't without its concerns too, such as a small seating capacity and potentially poor sight lines.
Well, the Islanders might find out pretty soon how viable the arena could be as a home. From CBS New York's WFAN:
Sources told WFAN.com on Thursday that the Islanders are in discussions to host a preseason game next season at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn, the future home of the NBA’s New Jersey Nets.
This is not the first time the Islanders have used another venue to push the reality that at the end of the 2014-15 season their lease with Nassau Coliseum ends. During the 2008-09 season when Kansas City was considered their hot relocation destination, the Islanders announced they’d be taking on the Los Angeles Kings in a preseason game the following season at the brand-new downtown Sprint Center.
If so, it'd be very interesting. If the game goes well, the front-runner (in my book) to land the Islanders could take a huge step toward being the Isles' new home. It would be a chance to answer some of the questions that loom about the arena hosting an NHL team permanantly. One of those however, that of small attendance, would remain. If the Isles made the Brooklyn arena home in a couple of years, it would be the smallest capacity in the NHL, below even Winnipeg's MTS Centre.
This could be the next step in relocating the Islanders only a few miles instead of a few hundred or even thousand miles. They can't afford to wait until the lease runs out, the uncertainty is too damaging both to the product on the ice as well as off of it. And as mentioned, the Islanders don't need any more road blocks.