Blog Entry

Bettman: Would be 'malpractice' if Islanders move

Posted on: October 25, 2011 11:22 am
Edited on: October 25, 2011 11:23 am

By Brian Stubits

Gary Bettman doesn't think the Islanders are going anywhere.

The commish made a stop on Mike Francesa's show on WFAN in New York and among other things, he discussed the plans to keep the Islanders where they are (not Nassau Coliseum, but Long Island).

"I refuse to accept that this team is not going to get a new building at some point," Bettman said. "[Owner] Charles Wang is committed to the Island, committed to the Islanders. He's devoted almost a decade of his life, tens of millions of dollars in pursuit of this and fortunately there are a few years left. They're not going to stay in the Nassau Coliseum no matter what, so we're going to need to come up with a solution somehow, somewhere."

That's all encouraging for Isles fans to hear. Nobody wants to lose their team.

Bettman continued:

"The team needs a new building and there has to be concrete plans on the horizon that's going to get it done otherwise we're going to have a problem," Bettman said. "I don't know exactly how we're going to solve that problem, but it's inconceivable to me that the Islanders wouldn't be on Long Island because it would be malpractice for those in charge to let that happen."

This part made my ears perk up. A "malpractice" if the Islanders were to leave New York? Well yes, I'd agree. However, why wasn't it a malpractice for the Thrashers to leave Atlanta, or the Whalers to leave Hartford? Bettman's answer probably would be simply that it was a malpractice in those spots too, but don't you think they would have liked to see the commish fight the same way?

The only differences between the Thrashers and Islanders is that the Isles didn't always suck and they are in New York. Then just swap ownership issues for arena issues and you have similar stories. It's just Bettman doesn't seem willing to let this one end the same way Atlanta's did. Which is good. I've stated many times that I don't like the idea of contraction or relocation (although at this point I think I'd be willing to bend on Phoenix).

You can listen to the entire Bettman segment here. One thing Bettman does well is interview on the radio. Just don't ask him to act in any commercials.

H/t to ESPN New York

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.


Since: Feb 18, 2012
Posted on: February 18, 2012 1:55 am

Bettman: Would be 'malpractice' if Islanders move

bettman is a LIAR and a joke. The Thrashers never had but about a month to find a buyer, after they were destroyed by atlanta STUPID group.

bettman owes Atlanta NHL fans THE TRUTH, he wanted to get those worthless canada fans off his back.

The NHL WILL fail again in Whinnerpeg and they will move again in about 10 years as NOBODY wants to be in that worthless town !!!!

bettman nneds to get off his ASS and get The Thrashers back in town for next season and tell Atlanta Fans why he HATES them !      

Since: Feb 10, 2009
Posted on: October 26, 2011 6:22 pm

Bettman: Would be 'malpractice' if Islanders move

rcr when I say New York I mean NEW YORK not the state and New Jersey may be close but its not New York. the state of Florida should not have two teams period and if so then THE CITY OF NEW YORK should too- which excludes Buffalo

Since: Feb 16, 2007
Posted on: October 26, 2011 1:42 pm

Bettman: Would be 'malpractice' if Islanders move

Maybe Gary can just do what he always the struggling teams get to the playoffs so they can start selling more seats...I mean doesnt this happen almost every so many years when we start hearing news of teams losing money and threatning to move? (Pittsburgh, Phoenix, Nashville)...Tongue out

To those die hard Hartford fans that I offended with my original post. I apologize. I miss read the information off of wikipedia about them relocating. They relocated from BOSTON to HARTFORD because they were sharing the arena with the Bruins it was not their relocation to bad!


Since: Dec 8, 2008
Posted on: October 26, 2011 12:45 pm

Bettman: Would be 'malpractice' if Islanders move

You're dead on!. I'm a life long blackhawks fan and was a season ticket holder when they were in the old Stadium. When the team turned to crap - the fans bailed. They invested in players, they started winning and look at them now! A competitive team, night in , night out will bring the fans back in droves!

Since: Apr 25, 2008
Posted on: October 26, 2011 12:35 pm

Bettman: Would be 'malpractice' if Islanders move

Bottom line - If the Islanders want a new stadium, then they need to pay for it themselves.  Voters have made it clear they are tired of paying for new stadiums for these sports teams.  The taxpayers lose money, while the owners/players/employees make money.  This is a private organization, not public, find your own financing and stop complaining. 

Since: Dec 17, 2006
Posted on: October 25, 2011 11:26 pm

Bettman: Would be 'malpractice' if Islanders move

I have been a season ticket holder for 5+ seasons now and a lifelong fan. The Islanders have made it somewhat affordable for those willing to purchase season ticket plans - especially if you are willing to sit in the 300 section, which I happen to love (between red and blue lines). I was at tonight's game against the Penguins and the building was half full (or empty if that's your thing). It was disappointing as a diehard fan considering the incredible games that have been played against the Pens the last couple of seasons. The building was full opening night and the Isles laid a rotten egg. The Isles look right now like the team that couldn't win a game for 20+ games last season - I hope I am wrong! A new building will not bring the fans....wins and very competetive hockey will. The Isles have got to start to winning games and scoring goals. If they do the fans will come. More displays like tonight's game will keep more fans watching their HD TVs in the comfort of their home. Sometimes I wish I was there tonight for example. That said, I will be back next game hoping that the ugly streak ends and the wins streak begins. GO ISLES

Since: Mar 10, 2008
Posted on: October 25, 2011 11:00 pm

Bettman: Would be 'malpractice' if Islanders move

If you build it they will come. But why does the they(ALWAYS THE TAXPAYERS) Aways have to foot the bill? And it doesnt matter what sport or country they always want the taxpayer to build them a new playpen.

Since: Aug 29, 2006
Posted on: October 25, 2011 10:38 pm

Bettman: Would be 'malpractice' if Islanders move

"The only differences between the Thrashers and Islanders is that the Isles didn't always suck and they are in New York."  haha that was awesome last paragraph!!! still laughing at that!

Since: Mar 29, 2011
Posted on: October 25, 2011 10:34 pm

Bettman: Would be 'malpractice' if Islanders move

Attendance is in direct correlation to the delapatated building issue.  New building, young team with high draft picks will fill the house wherever it may be.  As a lifelong islander fan in these kind of times im not dropping 200 bucks to sit in sec 209 of the mosoleum.  We in suffolk would welcome them with open arms and wallets

Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: October 25, 2011 7:01 pm

Bettman: Would be 'malpractice' if Islanders move

Well that and the Islanders are a 40 year old storied franchise with multiple championships in a proven hockey market, but other than that..... 

I'll certainly agree the Islanders are a 40 year old storied franchise, as a matter of fact they were one hell of a franchise for a very long time.  But your proven hockey market comment doesn't work for me, not in the Islanders case.  Yeah, New Yorkers love to watch the Rangers play and they support them in a big way, but the Islanders for quite a while now are at the bottom in attendance, 20 to 30 percent of their tickets not sold and some days 40 to 50 percent of the seats are empty.  Not good.... especially for a young and talented rebuilding team.  If I lived anywhere near I'd pay to see the Islanders play hockey...

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