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Ratner, Yormark: Brooklyn-Based Islanders would Play 6 Games at Nassau Coliseum

The Islanders' Coliseum-to-Brooklyn journey is all just one strange cycle.


It gets weirder, and yet somehow it all makes sense: Chief Islanders-to-Brooklyn escort Bruce Ratner and his group presented their proposal for Nassau Coliseum redevelopment today, and it would include the Brooklyn-bound New York Islanders playing six games per (non-lockout) year at Nassau Coliseum.

That's the word from reporters including Laura Figueroa of Newsday, who is attending today's presentations (and, predictably, had connection problems inside the old barn).

Look for more in Figueroa's and other filings after taking in multiple groups' proposals. The most surreal quote Figueroa tweeted:

Jay-Z, Nassau County champion. Because someone has to. (And NIMBY politicians sure don't.)

[UPDATE: IPB has a good overview of Ratner's proposal -- which again, was just one of several.]

To reset: Ratner helped bring the New Jersey Nets to Brooklyn as part of his Brooklyn arena and redevelopment project, got Jay-Z on board to ... design logos and double the hip factor, took advantage of Nassau County's tragically gridlocked politics to lure the Islanders to Brooklyn (because 20 years isn't enough time to plan a successor venue), and is now involved with a major proposal to redevelop that venue to host the Islanders in the location they will have just departed.

Got all that?

Much of this has been hinted or rumored for a while, and as crazy as the timeline sounds, it kind of makes sense: The Islanders have an entrenched history in Nassau but rarely fill the aging building. Their move west puts them in a far more lucrative location (luxury boxes, mass transit, sexy place the other major dailies might bother to cover) but one that is more difficult to access for an entrenched Long Island-proud chunk of their fanbase.

If the Islanders were rolling in the dough at the new arena in Brooklyn, a few games played at a redeveloped and smaller [Your Company Name Here] Coliseum could become hot-ticket events. That's assuming it's not too inconvenient to the hockey club to have an alternate home venue, and assuming the club continues its on-ice improvement. (Thankfully the latter is not defined by Game 1 of their playoff series with Pittsburgh, histrionic fan reaction notwithstanding.)

Good? Bad? Indifferent? It's just one proposal of many. I'm sure they'll pick one by 2021.