They’ll still be called the Islanders, but they’ll no longer be playing on an island after the NHL team is expected to announce a move to the Barclays Center in Brooklyn later on Wednesday.
The New York Islanders, who play in Nassau County, Long Island, plan on relocating to the newly christened Barclays Center in Brooklyn, with a move expected by 2015, the New York Post reported.
The arena is the new home of the Brooklyn Nets, who moved from New Jersey to play basketball at Barclays.
The NHL is insisting that the Islanders keep their name even though the team will no longer have ties to an island, the Post reported.
The earliest the Islanders can move to Brooklyn is 2015, when their lease expires with the Nassau Coliseum.
The Islanders and their owner, Charles Wang, are expected to unveil a 25-year agreement with the Barclays Center at a news conference, the New York Times reported. The NHL would still have to sign off on the deal for it to go through.
The Islanders have been pushing for a move from the Coliseum because of its outdated infrastructure, according to the New York Post. The newspaper noted that Nassau County voters struck down a $400 million plan to renovate the arena.
If the move to Brooklyn becomes official later Wednesday, as expected, the Islanders would be playing in an arena that holds fewer seats than the Nassau Coliseum.
When configured for hockey, the Barclays Center holds 14,500 fans, according to the New York Daily News. That would make the Brooklyn arena the smallest NHL venue.
The Nassau Coliseum holds 16,324 seats, according to the New York Post, but the Islanders had trouble filling out the arena. Attendance averaged 11,059 fans last season, the worst figures in the NHL.