Not to distract you from the bigger and more pertinent news of the day (John Tavares is locked up for the next seven years no a six-year extension, with a 1 p.m. press conference), but New Jersey Nets (that's the NBA) (that's basketball) minority owner Bruce Ratner was on Bloomberg TV dropping some quotes that might catch your eye.
In a wide-ranging interview he offered some specific thoughts on whether he wants the New York Islanders in Brooklyn, where the [bank of some sort] Center is under construction:
"Well I would hope that's possible. It depends on a lot of things. It depends on whether the Islanders want to come. It depends on whether they have different choices. I think it's not that likely that a new arena be built in Nassau County with the current state of the economy. So I certainly think there's a chance."
Nets blog Nets Daily provides the background and tip on that report. You can watch the video for yourself at Bloomberg TV, with the Islanders talk beginning around the 5:00 mark.
It's often been (intentionally?) muddied whether that arena would, could and should host hockey. The majority owner has expressed zero public interest in owning a hockey team. But all of those with a vested interest in the building and its surrounding development have incentives to drum up tenants.
Ratner -- who remember, is angling for his own interests here -- said he "couldn't talk about" whether discussions have taken place with the Islanders. There were reports in August of a meeting between Ratner, CEO Brett Yormark and NHL executives about the NHL playing in the new arena, but no specifics were given.
Just remember that executives stay tight-lipped when they want to. And when they want to float something publicly in a way that publicizes or advances their own interests, they'll do that, too.
We know at minimum that Ratner is interested in an NHL tenant at that arena. Beyond that, well we know this story will resurface here and there -- at oddly timed moments -- until that arena is fully booked and the Islanders' venue after 2015 is fully clarified.