The town of Uniondale, N.Y. and its Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum may not be without hockey for very long once the New York Islanders leave for Brooklyn and renovations to the 41-year-old arena take place.
The Bridgeport Sound Tigers, the Islanders' AHL affiliate in Connecticut, appear likely to head for Uniondale once the Coliseum is renovated. The Sound Tigers currently play at Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport. Sound Tigers president Howard Saffan denied it, but it does appear likely that Long Island will have hockey again in the near future. And doesn't Long Island Sound Tigers sound like a clever name, anyway?
As you may already know, Bruce Ratner -- the real estate developer who masterminded the Barclays Center -- has won the rights to redevelop the Coliseum once the Islanders head for Brooklyn in 2015. Part of his plan for the building includes keeping a strong hockey presence there. According to Islanders Point Blank, Ratner will likely ask the league to approve six Isles home games in the old barn per season.
Somewhat surprisingly, it appears the Islanders will not attempt to leave the Coliseum early. They will stick it out in Nassau until the start of the 2015-16 season, which means two more years of NHL hockey full time on Long Island. Soon after that, however, Uniondale will have hockey again, and with an Islanders presence.