Islanders-Devils to Be First NHL Game Played at Barclays Center

Jan. 31 (Bloomberg) -- The New York Islanders and the New Jersey Devils will play in the first National Hockey League game at the Barclays Center, the $1 billion arena due to open this year in Brooklyn.

The Islanders will be the home team in the preseason game on Oct. 2, according to a news release from the club. The National Basketball Association’s New Jersey Nets are set to move into the building, and become the Brooklyn Nets when the arena opens this September.

Voters in New York’s Nassau County rejected a $400 million bond plan to finance a new arena for the Islanders, who are drawing an Eastern Conference-low 12,670 fans per game at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum this year. The team’s lease in the Uniondale arena, about 25 miles east of Barclays Center, expires in 2015.

Charles Wang, the Islanders’ owner, has said the team will honor its lease.

“We’re not going to make any comments on any specific next steps,” he said in August.

The Brooklyn arena, which will have 100 luxury suites, four bars, three clubs and a restaurant, seats roughly 14,000 for hockey. The Devils-Islanders contest will also be the first NHL game held in Brooklyn, according to the release.

“We already have some of the most passionate fans in the league supporting our young team, and we are looking forward to expanding our base into Brooklyn,” Islanders General Manager Garth Snow said in the release.

The Islanders (19-22-7) have 45 points this season and are in last place in the five-team Atlantic division. They trail the fourth-place Devils (26-19-3) by 10 points.

The Nets and the Devils both play their home games at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eben Novy-Williams in New York at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Sillup at