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Isles' attendance in Brooklyn was brutal (in Nassau, better); BSE Global's Yormark: "We never discuss Belmont" (yeah, sure)

Islanders, arena ownership satisfied with Coliseum, Barclays postseason split, Newsday reported 4/10/19, quoting happy talk from the parties involved in the odd plan for the hockey team to play its first round of games at the undersized Nassau Coliseum and subsequent rounds, should the team advance, at the Barclays Center.

The latter has more seats, and suites, but is farther from the fan base and offers a less than optimal fan experience, at least for those with partial view seats. And the ice has had problems. All that has contributed to four years of diminishing attendance, as explained below.

While Islanders ownership aim to build a new arena, with partners, at Belmont Park, that won't be due for due for at least two more seasons. BSE Global, which operates both Barclays and the Coliseum, would like games at the latter, thus freeing up dates in Brooklyn and avoiding losses. This year they split games; next year's plan is unclear.

The question of competition

I've written about the likelihood that Belmont would do significant damage to the nearby Coliseum, given that they would compete for events and audiences.

Newsday's Jim Baumbach wrote:
Of course, a new arena at Belmont Park would be in direct competition for programming with both Barclays Center and the Coliseum [sic] for programming.
“We never discuss Belmont,” Yormark said. “The Islanders have to do what’s in the best interest of their organization and fans and I’ve got to do what’s in the best interest of my ownership... I've never really thought of it in a competitive way.”
We never discuss Belmont? That's not credible.

The attendance split was brutal for Barclays

Baumbach wrote:
The Islanders averaged 13,514 at 21 games at the Coliseum, which holds 13,900. In Brooklyn, they averaged 11,248 at an arena that holds 15,795, including some seats that have obstructed views.
Combined, that meant the Islanders were easily the last in the league, according to ESPN.


That was actually fourth in percentage of seats filled, given the two small arenas used. In 2017-18, the Islanders averaged 12,002 at Barclays; in 2016-17, 13,101; and in 2015-16, 13,626.

In other words, attendance has dropped steadily at Barclays.

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