Islanders fans are rejoicing as word is that 69-year old Charles Wang is considering selling the franchise. Of course, reports are that he wants $300M for the team. That would be $100M for every playoff win since 2004.
The Hockey News has two interesting articles about this sale. One is an account of how Islanders fans feel about Charls Wang.
Prospect of Wang selling Isles is a dream come true – and a nightmare ended – for their fans
The other makes a ridiculous statement about Wang’s flirtation with Kansas City, which was never serious.
Why wasn’t is flirtation serious? I will give you 12 million reasons why it wasn’t serious. The Islanders local cable TV contract is worth $20M/year. What could a team get in Kansas City? $2M/year, maybe? The Royals get $20M/year from Fox Sports. That’s for about 150 games. At most, an NHL team would get 33% of that figure. I guess an NHL team could top out at about $8M/year in KC. If a franchise relocation from Long Island (Brooklyn is still on the Island, by the way) to Kansas City, how would the franchise make up that $12M/year gap? And, that’s not even taking into account the radio contract.
An important point in Campbell’s story, aside from his silly mention of Kansas City.
Our industry insider suggests the only way an NHL team can make money now is to have ownership, or at least management control, over the building. The Islanders have neither and though the team will receive an unspecified annual payment from the arena as part of the lease deal they won’t get much, if anything, in the way of concessions and with it being Brooklyn, there isn’t much to be made in the way of parking revenues. And when Katy Perry and Walking With Dinosaurs have the Barclays Center booked, the Islanders don’t see a penny of that revenue, nor do they get any of the reported $20 million per year in naming rights.
ONLY WAY NHL TEAM CAN MAKE MONEY NOW IS TO HAVE OWNERSHIP OVER THE BUILDING. Did you get that? This is way an NHL (or NBA) team in Sprint Center has NOTHING to do with whether this is a “hockey town” or a “basketball town”. An NHL team in Sprint Center wouldn’t make money from Katy Perry or Justin Timberlake or
Pearl Jam concerts either.
Now if Wang had, say, taken the Islanders to Kansas City and worked out a deal with the Sprint Center, things might be different. There the Islanders would be able to dictate terms of their arrangement with the Sprint Center that they simply don’t have the power to do with Barclays.
Nope. Sorry, Ken, but this is wrong. The Islanders (or any team) would not be able to dictate terms. Or, at least we don’t know that. Interesting how the city keeps these things completely private from the public who passed the hotel/rental car tax to fund the arena.