Things aren’t pretty inside the Barclays Center. As the New York Islanders attempt to close the year out strong and claim a playoff spot, the ice at the Barclays Center has become a huge issue which has the club talking. Following a recent win in the shootout against the Carolina Hurricanes, the Isles discussed the awful ice conditions.
Via the New York Post, Kyle Okposo had some rather blunt comments about the ice:
“Awful. Can’t have it like that. It’s got to change. It’s got to be better than that. Early stages, kind of felt like one of the preseason games out there. It wasn’t very good.”
Head coach Jack Capuano had some critical feedback about the ice as well:
“We always want to play high-percentage hockey, and I think we had some turnovers through the middle of the ice that weren’t characteristic. But when [the ice] does get bad like that — and it was a little sloppy out there tonight — you want to make sure you make the simple play.”
The Islanders emerged victorious, but it’s clear they’re concerned about the conditions inside their own building. One of the biggest competitive advantages the Isles have is speed, but that’s partially nullified as the playing surface deteriorates. Barring some sort of collapse, the Isles will host at least two playoff games at the Barclays Center and they might be handcuffed by the ice inside their own building.
Other rinks tend to have issues with the quality of their ice as the weather warms up and that may be the case for the Barclays Center. The big difference here is that the Barclays Center already has a ton of other issues plaguing the hockey experience, adding fuel to the argument that the Isles’ stay should be short-lived.