"We are excited to bring our team and our brand to Newark and Queens for the pre-season schedule for next season," Nets CEO Brett Yormark told the newspaper. "We are looking forward to playing two games against two of our biggest rivals, the Celtics and the Knicks, at the Prudential Center. We are also excited to be playing a game at St. John's in Queens, a borough where we expect great support for the Nets when we move to the Barclays Center in Brooklyn in 2011."
Three more seasons in New Jersey?
As I've pointed out, 2011 is unlikely, leaving 2012 a more likely best-case scenario for a Brooklyn move. That would mean at least three more seasons in New Jersey and, given the poor attendance at the Izod Center, a temporary move to Newark--where the new arena has room on its schedule to accommodate an NBA team--has to be considered.
And if lawsuits and financing problems significantly delay or kill the Brooklyn arena, the test run at The Rock would help the Nets, New Jersey Devils (the main tenant), and city of Newark negotiate a future deal.
It's all negotiable
In mid-January, when a potential plan to play preseason games in Newark fizzled, Yormark told the Star-Ledger, "If that means taking us out of Izod Center, I'll consider that. However, all discussions (with the Devils) are off."
Now, as we realize, it's all negotiable.
In the Daily News
Daily News sports reporter Julian Garcia writes:
Since the Nets have been adamant about not moving to Newark, why would they want to give the impression that they might be if there wasn't at least a chance? It seems logical that by playing games in Newark they are sort of kicking the tires in case a permanent move there becomes necessary. And based on everything we've heard, it seems very likely that the Brooklyn thing will be much harder to make a reality than Ratner and his people are letting on.