ed blumenfeld

Every town has it's ghost stories, I'm sure you remember the one from the town where you grew up. Maybe your town had the one about a certain bridge that high school kids drove to, turned off their car lights, and saw a shadowy figure. Or maybe your town believed the one about the house on the hill, whose lights would turn on only after dark. The Islanders have their own such ghost stories, and one of the most prominent involves Pat LaFontaine buying the team.

LaFontaine's a former Islander and NHL star, so he's never had the money to buy a team by himself -- barring some lottery windfall. But he's forever been rumored to be putting together a group of investors with which to buy the team from current owner Charles Wang. The LaFontaine ownership story has been on message boards and blogs many times over the years, and with all due respect to those places and people, it never really had legs from serious mainstream sources.

Today, the LaFontaine ghost story just got a very serious mainstream source. Via Larry Brooks and Josh Kosman at the New York Post:

Tags: Arena News, bob nystrom, dennis potvin, ed blumenfeld, News, pat lafontaine, Editorial Aside
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Thanks to Newsday's Randi Marshall, we now have the names of four developers who have submitted RFQs to the County for development of the Coliseum property (and you should really follow her on Twitter if you want to keep up with this sort of news). I'm going to preface all this with the following; that this doesn't mean things are any closer to getting a new Coliseum built. Not only that, but the developers have not been asked even to submit plans yet. It's essentially a show of hands for who wants to kick tires on this political football that's on its last bit of air. Another key point here is that this process hasn't involved the Islanders yet, another important step before we really have an idea of how this impacts the team. Nonetheless, here are the details on the four developers who submitted RFQs to the County:

Donald Monti CEO of Renaissance DowntownsMonti's Plainview based company Renaissance Downtowns is probably the most promising candidate in the field for keeping the Islanders on the Coliseum property in that he's the only one of these four developers who has specifically said that he wants to help retain the Islanders. Renaissance has redeveloped many downtown areas in the northeast, most recently in Glen Cove with the Glen Isle Project. That project has an interesting connection as Monti's group worked with Rexcorp Realty, Scott Rechler's real estate company. Rechler was Charles Wang's former partner on the Lighthouse Project. How this would affect the Islanders and Wang positively or negatively remains to be seen.

One further note here is that despite the similarities of the two companies the rumors that Wang's Plainview based Renaissance Property Associates is related to Monti's Renaissance Downtowns are so far unfounded. A spokesman for Renaissance Downtowns confirmed to IPB that "there is no relationship between the two entities - but certainly a notable coincidence."

Tags: arena, Arena News, donald monti, ed blumenfeld, ed mangano, nassau county, new york islanders, NHL, Editorial Aside, rfq, scott rechler
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