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Isles fans planning protest for Saturday’s home game

Mar 13, 2014, 4:11 PM EDT

Blue Jackets Islanders Hockey AP

They’ve already planned their chants, like “Wang must sell” and “Snow must go.”

They’ll be wearing their jerseys inside out, and possibly paper bags on their heads.

And they don’t want anyone buying food at the game, because that only supports ownership.

Yep, this is what it’s come to on Long Island. A faction of frustrated New York Islanders fans plans to use Saturday’s home game versus the Sabres as a means to protest the “circus of an organization” it feels the once-proud NHL franchise has become.

From Isles Nation:

We are protesting the inept Isles organization and management, led by owner Charles Wang and GM Garth Snow. We are protesting the lack of progress of Garth Snow’s rebuild that has dragged out for way too long. We are protesting the lack of accountability surrounding this organization. We are protesting the constant salary of this team being at or near the NHL mandated cap floor.

The Isles, by the way, have the NHL’s worst home record, at 9-16-8.

  1. JoeAvg - Mar 13, 2014 at 4:16 PM

    Sad what has happened to this once proud franchise. I cut my hockey teeth watching these guys dominate the league for years.

    • c9castine - Mar 13, 2014 at 5:20 PM

      Yeah, for real. Attendance is brutal but I don’t blame them, I am not a fan of buying a product you know is a rip off.

      What do you do about an owner though? A GM can be fired, then again the owner has to do it. But unfortunately I doubt Wanger Banger is gonna sell the team because the fans are upset unless hes hurting real bad business wise, which at this point I can’t see how he isnt.

    • neonpep - Mar 13, 2014 at 5:34 PM

      I totally agree. I’m a Flyers fan, but I’m sad to see the Islanders franchise like this. They were once the scourge of the NHL and there is a lot of history with that franchise but it’s a shame to see them fall so far.

      • 950003cups - Mar 13, 2014 at 6:44 PM

        FA’s don’t wanna sign there. Remember when Visinovski and Nabakov were basically kidnapped via “waiver wire” didn’t want to sign there either? How do you think other FA’s felt?

        I have to be honest, so I could be completely wrong. But these players these days have turned so Prima Donna that I think SOME are turning down teams based on the arena and fan attendance. Not just the area the team is located in.

        Watch what happens when they play at the Barclay Center. It’s gonna be the same as what happened to the NJ Nets when they went to Brooklyn. They’re gonna be a force to be reckoned with.

      • 950003cups - Mar 13, 2014 at 6:47 PM

        NTC “trade lists” will have BROOKLYN on them across the league. That’s also when Wang will sell the team. When he knows he can get top dollar, and his real estate scam job is finished.

    • elrock7 - Mar 13, 2014 at 7:12 PM

      Yeah I remember the last time they had a good team. Bossy and Trottier were great, weren’t they?

      • elrock7 - Mar 13, 2014 at 7:14 PM

        ….and Tavares should stay at home until he gets traded, so his whole career doesn’t get wasted in that zoo!

  2. lowenni - Mar 13, 2014 at 4:17 PM

    Haha oh god, I love it. Wouldn’t mind seeing my Caps follow suit. These Isles fans have a right to be angry and tired of this, as long as there’s no Vancouver-esque riots I have no problem with a “protest” like this. At least they’re passionate!

    • bmoreredfury311 - Mar 13, 2014 at 5:44 PM

      I was just thinking the same thing. Caps fans should do this. Specially if Mcphee isn’t let go after years of disappointment. Unfortunately this will never happen in D.C. because of corporations that buy up most the tickets and fill the seats with clients and lobbyist. Hope it works out for the Isles fans.

  3. qauzaq - Mar 13, 2014 at 4:19 PM

    Good for them. The team seems ridiculously frustrating to be a fan of.

  4. neeza06 - Mar 13, 2014 at 4:24 PM

    Laughable. The protests start now when the team is actually in a decent position for the future but none during the milbury debacles. He made snow look like ken holland…. Oh and smart move boycotting the food because the islanders get $0 from food sales at the coliseum. It’s an outside company and the county sells the contract not the islanders which is part of why the coliseum was such a bad lease and why the isles are headed to Brooklyn. So it only hurts Nassau county. Doesn’t change a thing for wang. Nailed it.

    • jpelle82 - Mar 13, 2014 at 4:47 PM

      the timing is curious.

    • ibieiniid - Mar 13, 2014 at 4:48 PM

      lol if that’s all correct, you just earned today’s gold star.

    • c9castine - Mar 13, 2014 at 5:28 PM

      decent position for the future? enlighten us.

      and i would boycott the food regardless. in fact its a better reason if the Isles dont get a cut of it, which is by the way ridiculous if true.

    • tomwarns - Mar 13, 2014 at 6:13 PM

      neeza06 is a dope. If you look it up, SMG is a company that manages the Coliseum for the Islanders; they also operate dozens of other professional sports venues around the country (and the world). The Islanders do get a cut of the revenue, as does the county. You could argue that this won’t have that big an impact on Wang’s bottom line (and it probably won’t), but you are ignorant if you believe that the Isles get $0 on food sales at the Coliseum.

    • 950003cups - Mar 13, 2014 at 7:17 PM

      They wont get any concession money in Brooklyn either

  5. bct11554 - Mar 13, 2014 at 4:33 PM

    Don’t get Icelanders fans. If not for Wang this team would already be KC. The guy loses over 20 million a season. They are just treading water till Brooklyn. Then they will finally make money off food and beer

    • rbbbaron - Mar 13, 2014 at 4:50 PM

      “Then they will finally make money off food and beer” …and continue to spend as little as possible on their roster. Fans in Brooklyn will eventually tire of a substandard team all the same.

    • sascrobe - Mar 13, 2014 at 6:25 PM

      I’m sick and tired of people saying Wang is the only reason the isles are still in NY. It’s not true! Bettman has said on the record that the islanders would never move from the tri-state area. The NHL would NEVER approve a move to KC. They rejected the Coyotes move just recently. There is no way the NHL is going to let a team that won 4 straight stanley cups in the 80s leave NY.

      • elrock7 - Mar 13, 2014 at 7:21 PM

        Geezuz, this owner and franchise has been an absolute joke for 30 years!

  6. xdj511 - Mar 13, 2014 at 4:41 PM

    They need more home games against the Rangers. It’s the only time they fill their arena.

  7. ibieiniid - Mar 13, 2014 at 4:46 PM

    protesting a hockey team? what is this, Canada?

  8. pitpenguinsrulez - Mar 13, 2014 at 4:51 PM

    …And to think these are the fans who chanted “MVP” towards to Tavares. What a joke! Yeah that’s all fine & dandy with your walkout but last I check you’re still giving money to the them buying the tickets dumbasses.

    • 7mantel - Mar 13, 2014 at 5:10 PM

      They don’t sellout unless they play the NYR ! Just like the lean years in Pitt when the arena was empty !

    • sascrobe - Mar 13, 2014 at 6:26 PM

      First off they aren’t planning a walkout. Why don’t you try reading the article buddy. And secondly they are buying tickets on eBay and stubhub. These are tickets that have PREVIOUSLY been purchased. They are not giving any new money to the Islanders.

  9. blues1988 - Mar 13, 2014 at 4:56 PM

    “Wang must sell”, with a last name like that you’d think they could come up with something better.

  10. Whooten Anit - Mar 13, 2014 at 5:06 PM

    And make sure you buy tickets off the secondary market, not from the Isles! Put money in disgruntled fans’ pockets, not Wang’s!

  11. sjsharks66 - Mar 13, 2014 at 5:11 PM

    Last year, “Started from the bottom, now we here.”

    Today, “Turns out we are still at the bottom.”

  12. penguins87and71 - Mar 13, 2014 at 5:22 PM

    Wow. This is really discouraging. I thought last year when the Islanders made the Playoffs, and took the Penguins to 6 games that they would take off this year, but that hasn’t been the case. What a difference a year makes.

    • 7mantel - Mar 13, 2014 at 5:28 PM

      I also thought the Isles turned the corner last year ! The rivalry the NYR ‘s is still a good one but is amped up when both clubs are winning and contenting !

  13. djshnooks - Mar 13, 2014 at 5:24 PM

    Somehow everyone missed the irony here!

    They are doing this protest at a game against the Buffalo Sabres!!! Lmao.

    Thank you for the 1st round pick, Garth…now, everyone protest this circus, while our circus comes to town for a night!

    So funny. (Maybe it’s just me.)

    • govtminion - Mar 13, 2014 at 5:56 PM

      I’ll admit, that didn’t occur to me until you said it here, but yeah, that’s pretty entertaining now that you mention it. Heh!

    • sascrobe - Mar 13, 2014 at 6:29 PM

      Islanders can defer the first round pick to 2015 if it’s top 10. And it will be.

      • bullwinkle88 - Mar 13, 2014 at 10:01 PM

        Let’s hope they do…the Sabres would love to have a better chance to get McDavid!

  14. upyoursnfu - Mar 13, 2014 at 6:00 PM

    Bring back Mike Milbury!

    • thesportsjudge - Mar 13, 2014 at 6:42 PM

      This person gets irony!

  15. RoseTintedVisor - Mar 13, 2014 at 6:12 PM

    actually, do your research. When former Nassau Exec Tom Suozzi was leaving office, he changed the lease that was hamstringing the Isles. They get the concession money now.

    All the fans are buying already purchased ducats for cheap on the secondary market, thus adding nothing to Wang’s bottom line.

    Re: “They’d be in Kansas City without Wang” Wrong, bucko. There’s always another charlatan to buy the NY Islanders. Look at every owner since Boe.

    Lastly? They were never moving. At the height of their dynasty powers, they negotiated what is still the gold standard for an American Hockey Club’s television rights, and the first crook John Spano rolled over the option during his brief tenure. Thus, the league doesn’t ever plan on closing a revenue stream (of $30m! annually). Thanks.

    Also: Gary Bettman doesn’t ever leave a market HE BELIEVES in. See Phoenix. See Pittsburgh at their darkest hour. He digs in. He abandons markets he detests. Teams he cares about can stay forever.

    And what was Gary Bettman’s NHL team growing up? NYI.

    The ‘Wang as savior’ thing is uninformed bullcrap.

  16. zinger99 - Mar 13, 2014 at 6:21 PM

    Where have you gone Bryan Trottier!

  17. carltonthurman - Mar 13, 2014 at 6:35 PM

    Hey Im disappointed by the Vanek trade too – but the Isles probs begin with REVENUE, and that’s never gonna be cured with their present lease. Isles revenue is DEAD LAST in the NHL by a wide margin – $65mil compared to $80+ for the next lowest. The Isles are the TB Rays of the NHL – to compete, they need to be both very smart and very lucky, cause the deck is stacked against them.

  18. hockeyflow33 - Mar 13, 2014 at 7:07 PM

    Wouldn’t the boycott be more successful if they did not purchase tickets?

  19. crazemastercraze - Mar 13, 2014 at 7:25 PM

    “Everybody don’t have fun tonight, everybody don’t Wan Chung tonight!”

  20. claysbar - Mar 13, 2014 at 8:47 PM

    One question. When they move to Brooklyn, can Bossy be in the rafters?

  21. bct11554 - Mar 13, 2014 at 8:54 PM

    People get your info right good old Gary and Wang both Sid if they did not move to BK then they were selling the team and was being MOVED. Once the voters voted down the new building that was it for them here.

  22. jason9696 - Mar 13, 2014 at 9:02 PM

    I couldn’t stand the Islanders of the early 80’s. But what’s going on on Long Island is a complete farce. I really feel for their fans.

  23. gratescott - Mar 13, 2014 at 11:30 PM

    After reading this, I haven’t been this proud to be an Islanders fan in decades. However, if we really want to take control we need to put up or shut up. I’m calling for a kick starter campaign. We need to combine forces and force a sale of the team to the fans, “Islander shareholders”. The Green Bay Packers have been able to run one of the greatest sports franchises this way since 1923. We need to create a non-profit organization with a Board of Directors and force Wang to sell OUR team back to us!

  24. bruceleroy1 - Mar 13, 2014 at 11:39 PM

    This team is building a dynasty…….in Buffalo!

  25. bcisleman - Mar 14, 2014 at 12:18 AM

    Understand the frustration but its misguided. The rebuild has taken this long because Milbury left Garth with NOTHING to build on but RDP…and, well, you know…Literally the sole remaining assets from the Milbury era are Kyle Okposo and Frans Nielsen.

    Everyone is bent out of shape over trading Matt Moulson, right? You DO realize who signed him, right? Signed him after Shero and Lombardi, two cup winning GMs, gave up on him. Another big issue for many haters is that Garth did nothing to improve the goaltending last summer…except that he tried to trade for Luongo, Bernier, Schneider, Halak and Scrivens.

  26. ColonelFancy - Mar 14, 2014 at 8:59 AM

    Never should’ve traded Moulson for Tomas Vanek, the new Marian Gaborik. Why disrupt the chemistry of your FRANCHISE CENTER for the sake of a gamble!? You’ve lost three top tier defensemen in 18 months and replaced them with a bag of pucks and still have no prospect goalie for the future. Then you trade Vanek for a concession hotdog! I live in Ohio and I’m virtually surrounded by failed regimes, I have no idea how Garth still has a job.

    • 7mantel - Mar 14, 2014 at 10:22 AM

      He comes cheap ! Right up Wang’s alley !

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