UBS Arena: New York’s Next Big Ticket


Carter Bentivenga, Managing Editor

The New York Islanders have officially played their last game at the historic Nassau Coliseum, located in Uniondale. This isn’t like the last time they moved after the 2014-15 season when they infamously played a few “home” seasons at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. This time, the Isles have a new home… and this one is here to stay.

The prestigious Belmont Park horse racing track is placed just up the street from the Coliseum on Hempstead Turnpike. What’s so special about this, you ask? It’s where the new home of the Islanders is- at the brand new, state-of-the-art UBS Arena at Belmont Park.

It was a long road to get here- about four years. Finally, Dec. 20, 2017, was the big day when the announcement was made that the Islanders had defeated the NYCFC soccer club for their bid to build an arena on the same plot of land as the Belmont racetrack. The $1-billion bid would give the Isles something they hadn’t had since the early days at the Coliseum- a home built specifically for them.

UBS Arena will be a sight to behold whether you’re a fan taking it all in or a player looking to wow the crowd. Seating 17,000 for sporting events, the Islanders’ new home features amazing sightlines from all angles that truly validates the statement that there’s “no bad seat in the house.” In addition, the building will have a total of eight bars on the concourse that provides fans a view of the action, allowing them to be connected to the action wherever they happen to be. On the players’ side of things, they’ll have the luxury of enjoying a state-of-the-art locker room and a player campus that covers an absurd 23,000 square feet. Finally, I’ll wrap it up with a bit of an underrated feature to some- the jumbotron. UBS Arena will feature the biggest scoreboard of any arena in New York state, with two levels of high-resolution LEDs. So if you want to see a replay of something while watching the game, you’ll have an industry-leading spectacle to look at.

Hockey won’t be the only thing occupying UBS Arena when its doors open. The facility will accommodate around 150 significant events annually, including a ton of concerts (up to 18,500 in capacity). The sightlines at UBS Arena will allow concert fans to take in shows from tons of different angles and connect with the show on a more personal level. The arena also features a new state-of-the-art audio system that takes advantage of the arena’s acoustics, creating a better audio experience.

UBS Arena also has a lot of benefits for visiting artists as well. In fact, their artist campus was designed with input from Live Nation Entertainment, arguably one of the world’s most well-known event promoting companies. In addition, UBS Arena also features more real estate, load-in/load-out ports, and overall accessibility than any other arena in the area, making it cheaper to perform at, and overall a hot commodity for any artist scheduling a tour to the Empire State.

The Islanders will open their home schedule with a back-to-back set on Nov. 20 and 21, taking on the Calgary Flames and Toronto Maple Leafs (welcoming home former captain John Tavares), respectively. From there, they host their cross-town rival New York Rangers on Nov. 24, and wrap up their week on Black Friday when they host the Pittsburgh Penguins on Nov. 26 (also the first meeting between the two since the Isles eliminated Pittsburgh from last season’s Stanley Cup Playoffs).

Former One Direction member Harry Styles has the honor of being the first concert at UBS Arena, performing on Nov. 28. From there, the calendar month of November is closed out with WWE: Monday Night Raw on Nov. 29.