The New York Islanders could very well split their home games between the Nassau Coliseum and the Barclays Center for the 2019-20 season. It’s inevitable.
There’s no doubt that the New York Islanders home is on Long Island and specifically at the Nassau Coliseum. But the Islanders have had to split time between playing at the Coliseum and the Barclays Center out in Brooklyn this season.
The split will even continue into this season’s playoffs. On February 15th, the Islanders and the NHL announced that the Isles would play at the Coliseum for the first round of the playoffs and any other round at the Barclays Center.
That split for playoffs games should have been a large enough signal to the fan base that the NHL wouldn’t ‘OK’ a full season of home games at the Nassau Coliseum for the 2019-2020 season.
Not All In On Coli
The NHL was quite clear in its reasons for deciding to only play first-round home games at the Coliseum. In their eyes, the Nassau Coliseum isn’t an NHL caliber venue, even after the mild renovations that took place.
"Should the team qualify for further rounds of the playoffs, any home Islanders games will take place at Barclays Center, reflecting that the Nassau Coliseum does not qualify as an NHL major league facility."
That was confirmation enough, or at least it should have been, that the NHL wouldn’t give its approval for a full 40+ games for the 2019-2020 NHL season to be played at the Nassau Coliseum.
Name your reason for the NHL not liking the Coliseum. It could be any one factor (or a combination of them all). Low capacity, almost no luxury boxes, small concourse, long lines for food and washrooms.
It’s not to say that any of those are good reasons to dislike a venue, but when a larger portion of the NHL’s profits are from gate receipts it makes sense to like the larger Barclays Center. Even if a number of fans can’t even see the game.
Ideally, the New York Islanders should play every single home game at the Coliseum until Belmont is built. But the silver lining here is that the Islanders aren’t terrible at the Barclays Center. They hold a 78-48-18 record when playing in Brooklyn.
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We haven’t officially heard from the New York Islanders or the NHL on what will happen next season. But we’re already hearing whispers of the decision on Twitter. Don’t be surprised when the official word corroborates what’s being shared on Twitter.