The New York Islanders have scheduled a press conference this afternoon at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, where it is expected the club will announce it will move from its current arena in Nassau County, Long Island (at the expiration of their current lease in 2015) to the Barclays Center.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: While the timing of this announcement (in the midst of an NHL lockout) is surprising, the fact the Islanders could be moving from their long-time arena on Long Island to a shiny, new (albeit smaller) venue in Brooklyn is not.
Given the lengthy, ultimately fruitless efforts on the part of team owner Charles Wang to get a new arena built for his club, it’s been rumored for some time he might move the team to Brooklyn. What remains to be seen is not only if the club will change its name, but if its fan base on Long Island will continue to follow the club, and if the franchise will have any better luck building a winner there than they’ve had since the end of their glory years on Long Island nearly 30 years ago.
The one positive to be gleaned from this is the club didn’t have to relocate out of the New York area. That should stop those hordes of former Quebec Nordiques fans from travelling down to attend Islanders games as a means of stumping for the league to perhaps move the troubled franchise to Quebec City.