New York Islanders Owner Charles B. Wang and Barclays Center Majority Owner and Developer Bruce Ratner announced today that the Islanders will be relocating to Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The 25-year agreement begins for the 2015-16 season, subject to National Hockey League approval.
The announcement was made at a press conference in the GEICO Atrium at Barclays Center, which was also attended by National Hockey League Commissioner Gary Bettman, Islanders General Manager Garth Snow, and Barclays Center CEO Brett Yormark.
The New York Islanders name and logo will remain when the team relocates to Brooklyn.
"It was our goal from day one to keep the Islanders in the local New York area." Wang said. "We're thrilled to have the opportunity to play in a first class arena like Barclays Center. This has been a long journey for the Islanders family starting with our loyal fans, sponsors and employees. I want to personally thank them for their patience, loyalty and support. I am excited about today's announcement and look forward to a long and successful future in Brooklyn."
"We are delighted to welcome the Islanders to Brooklyn and to bring NHL hockey to the borough for the first time," Ratner said. "Eleven subway lines and the Long Island Rail Road come directly to Barclays Center at Atlantic Terminal, offering great accessibility for current and future Islander fans. I want to thank Charles for his determination in keeping the team in New York and for having the vision to bring his club to Brooklyn."
"Barclays Center will offer the Islanders with an exciting opportunity to grow their fan base and to build their brand," Barclays Center CEO Brett Yormark said. "Islander fans are going to love Barclays Center for its intimacy, sightlines, Brooklyn Taste culinary program, and customer service. We look forward to opening our doors for the Islanders and bringing the best in sports and entertainment to Brooklyn."
Barclays Center will hold 14,500 seats for Islander games. Current Islander season ticket holders will have first rights to purchase season tickets in Brooklyn.
Forever1940 is the nom de plume of Eric Hornick, statistician on Islander home telecasts since January 21, 1982. Visit my blog: NYISkinny.com and follow me on Twitter @ehornick