A sports arena that could host both an NHL and NBA team will almost certainly be built in Seattle, raising questions of just how an NHL team could find its way to the city in the near future. Could the New York Islanders, long embroiled in a testy battle with Nassau County, N.Y. regarding a new arena, be on the move to Seattle or elsewhere?
According to prospective Seattle team owner Don Levin, the answer is no. Via ESPN's Craig Custance:
"I can tell you there are not teams for sale that are available to move," Levin told ESPN the Magazine on Wednesday.
Not the Coyotes? Or maybe one day the Islanders?
"My understanding is that the Phoenix deal, [Greg Jamison] has come up with the money," Levin said. "The answer to the Islanders moving is never. They're not moving out of that market. No chance that's going to happen."
Islanders fans have long been worried about the potential that their cash-strapped, arena-poor franchise could leave it's historic roots on Long Island and find itself elsewhere. Brooklyn may not be the greatest alternative for Isles fans based further west on the Island, but it goes without saying that the new Barclays Center would be a much more desirable location for Isles fans than Seattle, Quebec City or elsewhere.
If Levin, the well-connected current owner of the AHL's Chicago Wolves, truly is in the know, it seems as though Islanders fans can relax a bit.
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