Barclays Center is making its newest tenants feel right at home.
Construction on the Islanders’ portion of the arena is still ongoing, but general manager Garth Snow and center Anders Lee got a preview of the team’s locker room and facilities by Barclays Center General Manager Steve Rosebrook before the club’s Blue and White scrimmage on July 8.
The tour showed off a space a bit more than half the size of a regulation rink across the building from the Nets campus, which will house the Islanders’ player lounge, training room, weight room, coaches offices, and video room, among other amenities.
“We loved playing in the [Nassau] Coliseum, but when you take this little tour, you’ll see what a first-class facility is like,” Snow said. “We are excited to call this our new home.”
The space, which for now is still mostly bare walls, will feature state-of-the-art amenities that could allow players to stay comfortable for morning skate, and then the hours leading up to and after a game. Snow joked that players may not want to leave after the morning skate.
“That’s a lot of time in the locker room area,” he said. “For us to make it this comfortable is a big plus for our organization and is big for our players.”
The lounge will have plush couches, video-game systems and prepared food. The huge oval locker room will feature a smartboard that will give the players and coaches a chance to watch films and implement strategies between periods using the touchscreen. The space dwarfs what the Islanders enjoyed at the Nassau Coliseum. Construction is expected to be completed by August.
Just seeing the space and renderings of what it will look like has Lee even more excited to call Brooklyn home.
“Coming to a place like this is so state-of-the-art and ready to go, we are in the best locker room in the league,” Lee said. “It’s going to help us.”
More than 6,300 fans showed up to get a taste of what to expect from the Islanders at their new home, watching a scrimmage of the club’s potential future stars, who played in the American Hockey League or college last season.
The Blue team posted a 5–3 victory with Sam Anas scoring twice. Anthony Beauvillier had two goals for the White club and Joshua Ho-Sang chipped in three assists.
The contest was technically the franchise’s first game with Barclays Center as its home. The club plays is first preseason game as tenants on Sept. 21 versus the Flyers, and open the season in Brooklyn against the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks on Oct. 9.
“We are excited for the move and for everyone to come with us,” Lee said. “It’s going to be a great year and we look forward to it.”