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This right here is one beautiful backhoe

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The New York Islanders break ground for their new arena at Belmont.

Groundbreaking Ceremony of Olympic Stadium
Pictured: Scott Mayfield and Adam Pelech prepare to defend the Islanders blueline. (Not really. Those are just some heavy machines from the other side of the world.)
Photo by Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty Images

The shovels are really in the ground.

No — I mean, that’s not a metaphor — they are in the ground. As we speak.

See photos at Horse Racing Insider, where a typically banal work environment suddenly feels like a reverie:

Heavy equipment tore up the tarmac in the parking lot where the arena will be built and trees were felled in part of Belmont’s former backyard, which now belongs to the Isles.

Belmont was abuzz with workers. Offices are setup both inside the grandstand and outside in trailers.

This is all happening one day after the hockey team got the final approval from the Franchise Oversight Board.

Boy, the team owners and land developers weren’t kidding: Once they got the final yes, they were ready to go. As previously announced, a more formal “groundbreaking” event — think suits wearing hardhats and holding unblemished shovels — will be held for fans and dignitaries after Labor Day.

Objective: Fall 2021.