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TV Deal Key To Brooklyn Islanders

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The Nets have said nothing about the Islanders since Brett Yormark emailed a statement that Barclays Center can host NHL hockey...but the debate over the Islanders joining the Nets in Brooklyn is intensifying. The key to whether the 2012 grand opening includes both teams may be a TV rights deal the Isles have with Cablevision, owned ironically by the Dolans. As Tom Van Riper writes in Forbes...

Back in 1999, as the local cable sports landscape was beginning its metamorphosis into team owned stations like the Yankees’ YES Network, the Islanders inked an extension with Cablevision all the way through the 2030-31 season, for rights fees that escalate from roughly $14 million a year initially to a reported $36 million by the last year of the deal.

That deal is currently valued at $20 million a year and easily the Islanders' most valuable asset. (The Nets get less than half that figure from YES, although it's in arbitration.) The other issues, Van Riper believes, can be dealt with and ultimately, he and others predict, the Islanders will move in with the Nets.