The New York Islanders affiliate are going through some beurocratic issues, not of their own doing, with the city of Bridgeport. Troubles that may seem them terminate their lease early.
Arena drama isn’t limited to simply the New York Islanders. Now two-thirds of the teams under the Islanders umbrella are having problems with their home barn.
We’re all well aware of the issue that the Islanders are having with the Barclays center. But what about the Sound Tigers?
The New York Islanders AHL affiliate, Bridgeport Sound Tigers are having to deal with town hall politics.
Currently they operate the Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport. A 10,000 seat arena right on Main St. but next to Webster Bank Arena is the now vacant Stadium at harbor Yard. The former home of the Bridgeport Bluefish of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball.
And that’s the center of the fight between the Sound Tigers and the City of Bridgeport. A baseball park.
According to CTPost.com’s Brian Lockhart, it seems that New York Islanders Owner John Ledecky had his vice-president Jay Itzkowitz sent an ultimatum to the City of Bridgeport.
"Approve the deal with Saffan — who was the Tigers’ president until 2015 — and the team will terminate its contract “rendering the arena vacant” and seek monetary damages based on “the remaining 14 years (with extension) of the operating agreement.”"
It seems that the city and it’s Mayor Joe Ganim are keen to redevelop the now unused baseball park and turn it into a warm-weather concert amphitheater. Something that flies in the face of the no-competition clause in the Sound Tigers contract with the city.
Now the Sound Tigers are ready to compromise with the City on a deal to stay at the Webster Bank Arena. But no word yet from the city on if they’ll agree to it or not before they set to vote on the new amphitheater on November 6th. The day before elections are set to take place.
This is another drama unfolding within the New York Islanders organization one that might reach it’s dramatic conclusion early than what is happening with the big club. If you thought one arena drama was enough, you’re going to have to make room for two.