‘We have a home now’: Islanders relishing long-awaited arrival of UBS Arena

Saturday night time was at all times going to be concerning the followers regardless of how the Islanders carried out on the ice.

After three many years of area drama that threatened the workforce’s very existence close to the New York metropolitan space, the doorways of UBS Arena — a $1.1 billion state-of-the-art home constructed for the Islanders — opened.

The Islanders saved to the all-too-familiar script of dropping the primary recreation of their new home, having finished so in 1972 towards the Atlanta Flames and in 2014 towards the Chicago Blackhawks — although the 5-2 end result towards the now-Calgary Flames was virtually anticipated with six skaters getting into the league’s COVID-19 protocols. 

Even amid a five-game dropping streak prolonged with key veterans sidelined, and with their instant schedule going through uncertainty attributable to their run-in with the virus, the magnitude of Saturday night time was not misplaced on the Islanders.

“It was great,” Smithtown native and Islanders winger Kyle Palmieri stated. “Having grown up on this space, enjoying on this division for the final six or seven years [with the New Jersey Devils], it’s a home these followers deserve.

“It’s an incredible building, the atmosphere was electric. Not the results we were looking for, but the fans showed up, they were excited to be here.”

Islanders followers wait in a line to enter UBS Arena earlier than the sector hosts its first ever hockey recreation between the New York Islanders and the Calgary Flames.Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports activities

Because the Islanders spent the whole night time unsuccessfully making an attempt to play catchup, 17,255 followers had been hurdled into the twenty first century as UBS Arena offered all of the creature comforts of a modern-day sporting venue whereas nonetheless sustaining the intimate, eardrum-shattering environment that turned a calling card of the workforce’s former home on the Nassau Coliseum; an outdated area caught 45 years up to now regardless of a current face-lift. Although the sightlines and pure hockey-watching expertise had been second to none.

“What a great atmosphere,” head coach Barry Trotz stated. “This is a new-school building that feels old-school when you’re out on the ice.”

The hockey world obtained a glimpse of it when Brock Nelson potted his second purpose of the night time to drag the Islanders inside one early within the third interval.

“It’s huge. We have a home now,” defenseman Scott Mayfield stated. “We’ve talked about it main as much as it with what guys have gone via. Brooklyn, break up seasons, closing out the Coliseum… it’s particular to be home. Particularly the followers who had been right here tonight to see what this constructing is… it’s one of the very best within the league.

“It feels like the [Coliseum] but it’s state of the art. I hope the fans really enjoy it.”

And the followers will hope that the Islanders take pleasure in it, too. The clock is already ticking for the Stanley Cup semifinalists two years operating as they sit in final within the Metropolitan Division after limping via a 13-game season-opening street journey whereas UBS Arena was being accomplished.

“All in all, excited to be home and it’s the start of something that’ll be great for us,” Nelson stated. 


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