Pete Paguaga, Sports Phanatic:
Robert Burton, CEO of Burton Capital Management based in Greenwich and famously known for recently demanding his donation to the University of Connecticut to be returned, has purchased the New York Islanders of the Nation¬al Hockey League and plans on returning them to Hartford and naming them the Whalers.
“I am very happy to be finally bringing a hockey team back to Hartford,” said Burton, “the city of Hartford has shown that they will support a team this time around.”
Gary Bettman, commissioner of the NHL who has always been against relocation, was happy to move the Islanders off of Long Island.
“Its about time,” said Bettman, “that old barn was about to cave in during a game and fall on the fans.”
The Whalers were located in Hartford from 1972-1997 and then were moved to Carolina and became the Hurricanes. The reasoning for the team leaving was because of poor attendance and the inability to build a new arena in Hartford.
Only two active players in the NHL, played for the old Whalers and Chris Pronger, who is one of them, doesn’t remember those years too well.
“Wait there was a team in Hartford,” said Pronger, “and wait I was on the team, when was this?
Bettman is confident that this time around the fans will come out and support the team.
“Hopefully the Whaler fans learned their les¬son,” said Bettman, “we decided to move them back to Hartford after a promise from Robert Burton that he won’t demand his money back.”
The Whalers will play their home games at the XL Center for the next two years and then move into a state of the art arena that will compete with Madison Square Garden said Burton.
“The new arena we will build in the Hartford area is going to be so sick,” said Burton, “I can’t wait for it to open up, everyone in the league is going to be so jealous.”
The now defunct Islanders had been strug¬gling for years with attendance but were showing signs of a turnaround when former owner Charles Wang decided to sell the team to Burton.
“He called me up, the other day and wanted to buy the team,” said Wang, “I was shocked I thought it was that Kutcher boy, and his prank show, I was very happy.”
Wang had been losing upwards to 30 million dollars a season on the Islanders and enough was enough.
“Want to talk about a complete waste of money,” said Wang, “all of the money I earned during my life is gone.”
Wang said that with the money he will re¬ceive from Burton is enough for him to live comfortable.
“Burton overpaid so much, he has no idea what he is getting himself into,” said Wang.
Since the Whalers moved 14 years ago, many hockey fans have became Boston Bruins fans or New York Ranger fans, but Burton wants those fans to come back.
“If the fans come back, we promise to at¬tempt to be competitive for a few years before I decide not to spend money anymore,” said Burton.
With the moving coming to the shock of many people including the whole Islanders roster, many of them aren’t to upset by the move.
“I am very excited by this news, I will be able to live in the same apartment as I did last sea¬son when I played for our minor league team in Bridgeport,” said Travis Hamonic, former Island¬ers now Whalers defensemen.
Most of the Islanders played in the AHL in Bridgeport last season and Hamonic isn’t the only player to be happy to go back.
“Are you kidding me, this is going to awesome,” said rookie goaltender Kevin Poulin, “I love Con¬necticut and the fans, its going to be great to leave Long Island, there are way too many guidos.”
Governor Dan Malloy is not only happy to have the team back in the capital but he is so excited that he has said that Burton or the NHL won’t have to even help pay for the new arena. Malloy said that the state residents would pay for the whole arena, increasing taxes and saving money by deciding to combine Western, Central and Southern into one super state school.
“The school system doesn’t need the money, it is all about having a real professional in the State of Connecticut,” said Malloy.
The other professional team that Malloy is talking about in the WNBA’s Connecticut Sun, which has struggled drawing fans, which has shocked Malloy.
“When the Sun came to Connecticut, every¬one was very excited and thought that the Sun would be able to compete with UConn with at¬tendance,” said Malloy, “but we were wrong, very wrong.”
The Whalers will open up the season against the old Whalers and now Carolina Hurracaines on October 10th begining next season.
Spoof: Islanders moving from Long Island and into Hartford
Pete Paguaga, Sports Phanatic: