For the first time in more than five months, the two central figures in the future of the Islanders and of a certain section of Long Island -- Islanders owner Charles Wang and Town of Hempstead Supervisor Kate Murray -- met, in person. It was the Long Island Regional Planning Council meeting, with the Lighthouse Project as one agenda item.
There were some sparks, but it was hardly matter and anti-matter coming together to annihilate one another. There was even a mildly optimistic tone from Wang immediately following -- though I'm not sure if that was from any progress or just from the release of getting to address his frustrations with Murray face-to-face, in public.
Wang repeated his October deadline before looking elsewhere; he repeated his wish to hear "yes or no" from Murray. Murray said she can't deliver on either, not now ("...how about now? ... Now? We there yet?"). But they will meet again Friday to outline "process." As I've argued all along, regardless of one's position, engagement is always good. Communication and accessibility is a public representative's obligation. Or so goes the theory. [Reports and reactions after the jump]
- As linked yesterday, Newsday's Jim Baumbach had the thorough play-by-play in his live blog. It's all there.
- Baumbach's (sports) news story: "We have many cities that have an interest in us," Wang said. "I haven't gotten back to them."
- Political reporter Eden Laikin's version of events.
7th Woman: "I wouldn't start dancing in the streets, but we have 'lift off' at least." Later: A more fully fleshed 7th Woman-style post.
Doug of Official's Outlook: "It went as well as it possibly could have" for a L.P. supporter.
- Prior to the meeting, Nick had an ominous sample of residents' views as found during a different Murray appearance the day before. After a quick reaction to yesterday's meeting, last night comes the fuller, point-by-point Nick-style post that observers like myself have become addicted to.
No matter where the Islanders are headed, the franchise will have a new star in its lineup next season. A little hockey-related stuff yesterday:
- Once again, with feeling: Tavares would be happy to join the Islanders [nhl.com]. And again... [Botta] and again...
- As quoted in a FanShot here yesterday, Greg Logan's blog on Snow meeting the top three picks, and appreciating pro-Tavares fans' "passion"
- Logan's news story; same material plus a Snow quote about game-planning for the trio of late-first/early-second picks.
- Contrary to Chris Botta's wishes, the Islanders still view the top three 2009 draft prospects as viable options.
As always with these LHinks/Blade Splinters, you are welcome to add additional links in comments, or to alert me via email (address is next to my name at the bottom of any page).