Home is where the heart is, and for the New York Islanders, the heart of their franchise lies at the Nassau Coliseum. The New York Islanders will be playing a portion of their games at the old barn during the next three seasons during the construction of their new, permanent home at Belmont Park. Next season, they will be playing twelve games at the Coliseum, which is music to the ears of many New York Islanders fans- especially myself.
Most reports you’ll see will talk about how this is a good move because it brings the organization back to where they played when they won their four consecutive cups, as well as talk about how Long Island is where the New York Islanders belong, but this one will be a bit different. I enjoy this move because it brings my New York Islanders back to the arena where I basically grew up.
It all started when I was about 3 or 4 years old living on Long Island, and some of my family members took me to my first ever game at the old barn. I couldn’t remember who we were playing, what the final score was, or even what year it was for that matter; but that was where my childhood began. Ever since then I attended all 41 home games for roughly 6 seasons before I moved down South to Florida, and boy was those 6 seasons magical.
The New York Islanders only had made the playoffs once in that span, but it didn’t matter to me. Whether the Isles won or lost, they were still my team and the Nassau Colisseum was my home, my happy place for 41 nights a year. I grew up in that arena, and in a sense, the Islanders grew up with me. As I matured from the 5-year-old kid who was amused by the game, into the 16-year-old hockey blogger that stands here today, I watched the Islanders mature from that mess of a team that they were in 2008 into the team they are today.
Sure, they might only be playing twelve games in that arena next year, but boy will those be an emotional twelve games for all New York Islanders fans, including myself.