At this point, you probably have heard that Nassau County Exec. Ed Mangano received ‘X’ amount of proposals on Monday the 30th of July for (re)development of The Hub. The only thing being reported as of right now, by Randi Marshall of Newsday, is that at least two of those proposals involved in a new/refurbished Nassau Vets Memorial Coliseum are from local developers Ed Blumenfeld and Donald Monti. I know very little of these two developers other than that they are reported to have some connections with Isles owner Charles Wang as well as the various pertinent municipalities that would be involved in the process of getting a deal done. One, Donald Monti, has gone on record with Marshall indicating that he is a big proponent of keeping the team in Nassau County. Yesssss.
Shoot, here we are in 2012 still talking about this thing. Amazing. Wang incepted his Lighthouse Project idea prior to 2005. It was subsequently shot down years later due to the Town of Hempstead (specifically Kate Murray, Town Supervisor) essentially saying it was too big of a project and the area and infrastructure of the zone could not handle is ‘largeness’. Then came the referendum vote last year in which Nassau voters could approve the use of some public money to help finance a new arena. This too was shot down . . . by the voters.
Soooooo . . . here we are with the newly submitted proposals sitting on Ed’s desk just percolating with promise. Yea right. Wait a sec. Before continuing, I think I should be clear in noting that I am, for the most part, pro-Wang. If there is such a thing. Is there? For certain, there are two very much polarized camps when his name comes up in Islanders Country. For and against. Revolutionaries and loyalists. So on and so forth. Anyway, just thought that was worth noting.
We all are well aware of the ‘Catch 22′ nature of this situation and the viciousness of the cycle that has been promulgated. Let’s rehash anyway, just for fun . . .you know, for the kids. Here are the factors that are very much connected to each other. The Islanders are struggling to improve their performance / standing as a team in the NHL. Why? Because they are having difficulty in attracting competent and in-their-prime free agents to complement the highly touted core of young talent already here on the Island. Why won’t these free agents come here? Because the future of the Islanders Hockey Club is very much uncertain following 2014-15. Why is this? Because owner Charles Wang promised that the Islanders will no longer play at NVMC following that season. These questions and answers just mentioned can be interchanged and sequenced anyway you like. Did ya notice that? Go back and switch them around! It’s like something from Highlights magazine. Magic.
And at this point, not even the surest of folks or diehardest of Isles fans out there can say for sure when (and why and how) this all began. There are so many arguments to be made and discussed; it’s not worth delving into. Go ahead try it. I dare ya. Double dog dare ya.
All that is for certain is that somewhere along the line, talking Islanders hockey at social events and family functions became the equivalent of talking politics and religion. You end up having the same conversations and making the same points month after month . . . year after year. But ya do it anyway. You know EXACTLY what I’m talking about don’t you? It shouldn’t be that way, most fans of other NHL franchises don’t have to do that.
Say what you think and think what you want but despite the malfunctions and shortcomings of the political processes that take place in Nassau County it’s somewhat nice to know (deep down in the belly) that people, politicians specifically, are still in their swinging to get something done.
However, with that being mentioned, let me reference a quote by my main man, a bright dude and founder of the scientific method.
“Hope is a good breakfast, but a bad supper.” – Sir Francis Bacon.
You wanna know something Isles fans? It’s gettin’ close to suppertime.
Couple other fun facts before wrapping up my mindless wanderings . . .
- No arena, park, field etc. has been built with purely private funds since Pac Bell Park (now AT&T) in San Francisco (Opened in 2000). By all means, correct me if I’m wrong.
- Nassau County is broke. Really it is. Really really friggin’ broke.
- There are about 1.5 million people living in Nassau County and about the same in Suffolk. Just throwing that out there.