UNIONDALE, N.Y. – Clark Gillies and Bob Nystrom returned to the New York Islanders Nassau Coliseum, home to four flat Stanley Cup championships in 1980-83.
Now renovated and part of NYCB Live, the Islanders will return home in the first of the 21 home games this season as they host the Columbus Blue Jackets on Saturday.
. I've never seen the old place so beautiful, Ad said Gillies, who played 12 seasons, including four-season teams for the islanders. "I think the fans will be the big winners. It's great. They've done a lot of work on them."
After failing to keep the islanders in Nassau County, they left their homes at the Coliseum in 1972 from the moment they joined NHL, and the rents they rented ended after the 2014-15 season and moved to the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The Coliseum has a $ 165 million renewal, with 13,900 fans down from 16,234 for hockey.
In January, it was announced that the islanders would return to their original home for 60 houses (now 61; the game against Toronto Maple Leafs moved from Barclays Center on February 28) in the 2020-21 NHL season. The state of New York then pledged $ 6 million to meet the NHL requirements in the Coliseum, particularly investing in the redundancy and dehumidification of ice-planting and media and broadcast cabling infrastructure.
2021-22 At the start of the NHL season, the Islanders, who will be transported to a new arena in Belmont Park in Elmont, New York, added another $ 4 million to renovate their changing rooms and facilities.
Gillies and Nystrom, who played with the islanders between the years of 1972-86, visited the room renovated on Wednesday.
. Absolutely fantastic, # Nystrom said, starting in the Coliseum with the overtime working in Game 6 in the 1980 Stanley Cup Final against the Philadelphia Flyers. "We have a lot of memories here. They're just excited about talking to fans and coming here to play some games. It's much easier for young people to come and watch the team. I'm so excited, I think it's gonna be great for Long Island.
"You look at all the buildings that are being replaced: Boston, Buffalo, the Penguins … in those days they were so tight, it just felt a little different. To come back here and look like it was now and it was wonderful."
The current team is also excited.
Captain of the island Anders Leethe first full NHL season was the final in the Coliseum. In the first round of the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs, Islanders took part in three home games against the Capitals of Washington and Islanders lost in seven games.
Hâlâ I'm surprised the roof is still there, Lee Lee said. Muhtemelen I can't tell you how many games we won that year, because we've had the momentum of the crowd behind us, a good shift, that kind of energy in that building turned into three with this kind of energy.
"Turning back to that, it's going to be exciting to go back a little. It's clearly drawn to a different level in the playoffs."
The island coach Barry Trotz served as the coach of the capitals on the other side of this series. He remembers the decibel levels reached by the Coliseum for the 3rd, 4th and 6th Games.
"I'm excited about people on the island." Said. "I think it will be a special day. It will be special enough to go back there. I think this is the right place. It sounds right."
Even with new seats, a new paint and elevated facilities, the Gillies Coliseum is thrilled to have the same feeling. Memories flow through every moment as they enter their doors.
"We've been to these corridors many times," Gillies said. "Thousands of times in and out of the corridor, most of the time we walked in and out, celebrating a victory. It's a special place for all of us to play in these teams. I'm glad we're back.
"In the Coliseum, as in the Barclays Center, there will be a whole new experience for fans. I'm very excited. I can't wait."