Thursday, August 4, 2011

Go Pound Ice

Nassau county voters in Long Island rubbed their stinky gloves in the face of New York islanders' owner Charles Wang this week, shooting down a $400 million deal to rebuild the team's rink.

Now, two points:

1) The building probably isn't up to snuff of even the NHL, where bad buildings used to mean home ice advantage and a certain animosity towards visitors. I remember the Flyers of my youth playing through fog and chippy ice; they seemed to be used to it, while the visitors were not. Of course, this is a different era, where only the swells get to go to more than a game a year, so everything's got to be cherry now.

2) Everything I just wrote is a real good reason to hate sports, except for Wang biting it. (Heh heh.)

Now, Wang says he's heartbroken.

No, seriously.

“I have to tell you I’m disappointed, and to put it very bluntly, I’m heartbroken,” is the actual quote in the paper of record. Perhaps he can afford tissues? Anyway, he'll stay in the stinky old building until 2015, and spend the next 3-4 years threatening to move to people who won't care, as if there is a North American market that (a) should have pro hockey and (b) already doesn't have a pro hockey team, or a sad legacy of failure on the ice.

Perhaps they can move to Atlanta. Or Hartford. That's almost still in the area, and gives them the opportunity to fill the rink with low-level Mouse drones looking for a local place to drink while pretending they like sports. As I'm not from that part of the world and have never seen the point of visiting, I'm not really sure why there is a pro franchise out there anyway.

But anyhoo.. back to the bigger story here, which is one more case of American Voter waking up to realize that Sports Team Owner deserves a bailout even less than the people who usually get them. And that's all well and good and will continue to do things like arrest the continued existence of publicly funded stadiums in California... but I wonder.

Is it that we've finally seen through sports owner bailout, or is it just that the general public doesn't really care about hockey?

Hoping the former, but it's probably the latter.

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