- Mike Mazzeo, ESPN Staff Writer
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The Islanders will take on the Devils on Oct. 2 in the first-ever NHL game at Barclays Center.
The preseason tilt is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m.
The $1 billion Brooklyn arena will officially open on Sept. 28 with the first of multiple JAY-Z concerts.
“We’re extremely excited to play the first NHL game in the new, state-of-the-art Barclays Center,” Islanders GM Garth Snow said in a statement. “We already have some of the most passionate fans in the league supporting our young team, and we are looking forward to expanding our base into Brooklyn.”
“We feel Brooklyn is an untapped hockey market that offers the Islanders with an exciting opportunity to grow its fan base,” Nets CEO Brett Yormark said. “Barclays Center will also afford current Islander fans with great accessibility, as the Long Island Rail Road and nine subway lines will come directly to the arena at the Atlantic Terminal transit hub.”
The Islanders had hoped to begin a $400 million renovation on decrepit Nassau Coliseum, but the project was voted down. Their lease there expires in 2015.
“They still have 3 1/2 years to go,” NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said recently. “I find it hard to believe that there won't be a solution to that building situation. Long Island deserves a new building, not just for hockey, but for concerts and family shows and the like. And I've got to believe the people in charge of those things will tend to it in due course.”