Did you see the recent comments that Nassau Coliseum developer Bruce Rattner made to the Garden City Chamber of Commerce regarding future plans for the Uniondale arena? Yes, that is the same Garden City, via Town of Hempstead Supervisor Kate Murray, that helped squash the initial tax-free proposal that would have refurbished the Coliseum at no cost to residents. Consequently, nobody had to attend the latest Chamber of Commerce meeting in order to know what went on there.
Birds of a feather
Use your imagination and picture the minions clapping in unison for the little people. Some would even venture to describe the scene at the Chamber mockingly, as rather quaint. According to a report published by The Garden City News on Jul. 17, 2014 about the future of the Nassau Coliseum, Bruce “Pinocchio” Ratner is quoted as saying it “would not be a ‘typical arena,’ but rather that focus would be placed on personalization and the development of a friendly, welcoming and meticulously maintained facility.”
Oh really? Blah-blah-blah-blah, is that how Ratner depicts the Barclays Center in Brooklyn? The Barclays Center and Madison Square Garden are the home to renowned professional sports franchises. The Coliseum will soon have none since Ratner inked the Islanders to a deal in Brooklyn; the team is set to leave in 2015. Meanwhile, Ratner is running the Coliseum re-development while he keeps things going at the Barclays Center. Does that sound right to you? It seems the Coliseum is not getting a fair shake. But wait, there is more.
The disappearing bout and a Barclays takeover
In June, Coliseum loyalists thought they would have the chance to root for Long Island-born boxing champ Chris Algieri at a home town title bout. But the powers that be stepped in and moved the match. Peter Schwartz, writer for cbslocal.com explains, “The title fight was originally slated for Nassau Coliseum but was switched to the Barclays Center.”
Earlier in July, the Nassau Coliseum’s official enewsletter, Coliseum Connection, promoted upcoming events at the Barclays Center. You heard it right. The Coliseum is trying to get its fans to go to the Barclays Center. Hmmm, how does that happen? Why is the Coliseum accepting advertising dollars from the Barclays Center? The Coliseum has its own problems when it comes to filling seats. It is quite clear that the Barclays Center views the Coliseum as a second rate venue. At least Ratner says it is going be friendly. That should pack them in on Long Island.