CONJECTURE IS NOT NEWS: Ken Campbell Strikes Out With His NY Mets Rumor Du Jour.

Take a great newspaper and highly respected tome, The Hockey News….but constantly misfire the web offerings, and then add in blogs with gotchya headlines full of opinion and conjecture…and you get people repeating about it….whether it is factual or not.

I guess this is a step up from THN failed attempt to copy the Hockeybuzz.com web offerings where two years ago,they tried to swipe all their bloggers thinking that would suddenly make their website boom. A few months later all crashed to a halt letting throwing all those bloggers to the curb.

Funny thing is…Ken isn’t the only one now to use this attempt of opinion as news…other bloggers, especially those struggling for eyeballs to offset payments, are doing the same thing…and those who read blogs for pertinence and sourced material are getting misled at times by these “cults of personality” looking for reaction.

What is hilarious about Ken’s missive yesterday about NY METS owner Wilpon being interested in buying the NY Islanders, besides the fact there is not one shred of proof of such a thing…

Is I had just got off the phone with a highly placed source who had just told me that Wang would never sell in such a down market. He’s not a billionaire for being stupid…citing selling with no value in an economic downturn, would be very much stupid.

Moreover, we were also discussing how Charles Wang, owner of the Islanders, is very much in business with the NHL. NeuLion, the people who also setup the NHL league-wide website video system and who just created the NHL’s important iPad and iPhone app is run by Charle’s wife.

You think Wang is selling the Islanders?

Guess again and get a clue. Ok, that might be a touch too strong…but point is…Isles fans, media and blogger are just tired of unfounded rumors. Have something on the record or just stuff your conjectures, boys and girls.

There has been much conjecture about the Isles, but it is not coming from the Isles themselves. It is coming from a questionable “NHL source” who have been pushing this to anyone with a loose link to them since over a year now. However, it has shown to be inaccurate, yet some of these bloggers just keep buying the fiction.

The problem with “league sources” is sometimes they are just desk jockey types with an opinion sometimes instead of a factual source with information. Sadly, it is creating some real blog audience whores emaciated from lacking any actual information. I get that blogs are opinion…but don’t they need to be accurate once in a while?

Meanwhile, not once does anyone touting this “info” even wonder how in hell CitiField would someone fit an ice hockey rink. One would guess they’d just skate on the ice because somehow hell would have frozen over. Nor did anyone even wonder if the Wilpon money has even recovered from the Bernie Madoff Ponzi scheme. Or maybe they have their hands full with just baseball right now.

Accountability and accuracy seems far more important than wondering aloud any errant synapse. I mean, how does that type of blog be any different from some fan’s message board missive? I don’t think it helps the cause.

Wake me when the Steinbrenner family looks to buy us also…because TMZ said so.

Oh, and to those convinced the sky is falling still, here is Botta’s take which is basically the same thing: Calm freakin down…nothing is happening. Ok, not exactly those words, but that is his point.

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About the Author: B.D. Gallof is a published writer and hockey blogger. He writes about Hockey, NY Islanders & the NY Islanders venue situation for CBS New York. BD has been written up in Sports Illustrated, TSN.ca, the NY Times Slapshots blog, Yahoo's Sports and SportsBusiness Journal. He has been a featured blogger for The Huffington Post, as well as owner, lead writer, and managing editor at HockeyIndependent.com.

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  1. Isles Fanatic says:

    THe longer it takes to resolve the whole Lighthouse issue, themore these toie will pop up and the more rumors will see the light of day..

  2. TPJM22 says:

    “I had just got off the phone with a highly placed source who had just told me that Wang would never sell in such a down market.”

    Is this the same source that said there’s a 95% chance that Roloson would be traded by the deadline?

    Pardon me if I believe the respected THN before I believe you. You think Wang’s wife couldn’t deal with the NHL now via NeuLion if Wang didn’t own NYI? Did you forget Wang said he regretted buying NYI, is tired of losing money and would explore all options?

    Now add to that Wang’s disgust when TOH presents a miniature version of the LH for approval and it could be Hello Wilpon. Not saying this will happen but to firmly believe it’s not possible seems naive.

    Guess again and get a clue.

    • BDGallof says:

      Anything is possible, but your argument lacks one fact…

      Ken never cited a source.

      Argument done. Bye bye

      • TPJM22 says:

        You were saying? You’re wrong again Gallof. See Newsday today. You can make your apology out to TPJM22. I’ll go slowly for you – that’s T-P-J-M-2-2. You’re done. Bye bye.

        Wilpon, Wang talk about moving Islanders to Queens

        Originally published: May 12, 2010 12:50 AM
        Updated: May 12, 2010 2:09 AM
        By KATIE STRANG caitlin.strang@newsday.com

        QUOTE
        Jeff Wilpon, the Mets’ chief operating officer, said Tuesday he has talked with Islanders owner Charles Wang about building an arena in Queens as a possible home for the hockey team.

        Wilpon told Newsday in an exclusive interview that he has had recent discussions with Wang about relocating the team to a new Queens arena and also said that it remains a possibility that he could buy the team.

        “I’ve had conversations with Charles,” Wilpon said by phone Tuesday, “and we’ve talked about Queens. We’d like to be helpful and I think Queens is an option. We built Citi Field well under budget and on time. I have all my guys ready.

        “We’ve had numerous discussions with Charles [Wang] and with Don Garber about soccer as well. We’ve been in touch, talking to Charles about what can be done synergistically with all of his technological [assets]. He likes the market here and they have all been positive conversations with him.”

  3. TPJM22 says:

    …..Also, Campbell’s article says many teams might be for sale soon. Even in this down market. What makes Wang’s team so different that he wouldn’t sell?

    • BDGallof says:

      Why sell when value is down. Would you? Hey…are you selling a house now? Or would you wait till the market swung back up if you could. Attach it to some reality rather than an argument of convenience b/c you like to.

      • TPJM22 says:

        Again, many other teams are looking to sell in a down market. You’re just hoping NYI doesn’t leave LI. Nothing more and nothing less. You’ve done it forever on this blog ignoring most reality. Talk about liking convenience.

      • Isle27 says:

        You mean the housing market on LI will come back up BD are you sure because a lot of your posters on here are saying LI is going to go right down the toilet because they can’t get “affordable housing”.

      • MJS says:

        Eventually Wang would need to sell if he believed that the team would continue to hemorrhage money and he that the team’s value would never recover, at least without the Lighthouse. Undoubtedly he would want the best value he could get, but it is feasible that Wang could sell if he wanted to be done with the team, the Lighthouse, and the financial burden. I think it was in Botta’s post where it was pointed out that it would be more worthwhile to sell at the end of the lease, but if some of the dollar amounts we’ve heard to describe Wang’s operating losses are accurate ($20 million per year), then it would be about a combined loss of $100 million by that time if the team doesn’t pick up the on ice product and get fans back in the seats. Likely or not, the concept of getting the team onto Willet’s Point is one idea that won’t go away. Getting the Wilpons involved one way or another would help that, and all of it is feasible at first glance. For myself, I tend to believe that Wang isn’t trying to sell the team right now and all the press on this is, as you say, one craptastic blog post added on to some typical Canadian media “Make It Seven” hype. In the next year or two much of this could change, though, and Cahlie Wang could decide that he can’t wait for the team to become more valuable, or that there’s serious value to him in eliminating the liability. I know he’s a billionaire, and I’m sure Wang would like to stay one, so that sounds pretty realistic to me.

  4. TPJM22 says:

    Here’s another chat about NYI moving from The Globe & Mail, story link below –

    And who else might be crossing the great unguarded border?

    And of late, a new name has entered the mix: the New York Islanders. Whispers are that for a price, you could have them, and move them all but instantly.

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/hockey/coyotes-first-in-nhls-stampede-to-canada/article1561368/

  5. TPJM22 says:

    Lastly, Bettman has mentioned Wilpon as a possibility as well. Can’t get more authentic than that.

    BTW, posters at HF are saying Ken Campbell is very reliable and often has the inside scoop.

    Have I convinced you yet? NYI would be Kings in Queens!!!

  6. Isles Fanatic says:

    Obviously,

    Hearing news, reading a bog, that hints on how our favorite team may be moving hits a touchy cord with us all, but I must say this… Where there is smoke, there is a hint of fire… Until the whole, Lighthouse situation gets resolved, and Wang speaks up…We cannot fully dismiss anything…sadly…

  7. BDGallof says:

    “Posters at HF” is where you lost me. Sorry. Love HFBoards, but if you are basing your argument on that, you are done.

    Bettman NEVER mentioned Wilpon, he mentioned Willets Point. Get your facts correct. you are all over the place today.

    • TPJM22 says:

      Get a clue and go listen to the WFAN interviews with Bettman, Carton & Boomer. Clearly Bettman thinks Wilpon is an option and prefers Queens. Your stance from Day 1 is you don’t want NYI to leave LI and think Queens & Brooklyn would never happen. Well, Brooklyn will soon have an arena and Queens will be a viable option. Just because you don’t want to face the facts that NYI might leave LI doesn’t mean you have to slant things and discredit reputable writers…..especially when your “sources” are usually wrong – as are you often.

      • BDGallof says:

        Ok, now you are talking out of your ass….Gary most certainly did not mention Wilpons as a possible owner when he has one. That would be suicidal for his career.

        The only one clinging here is you pal. I offered to take this offline via email, you chose to make an ass out of yourself citing innaccurate and false info.

        League denials…which counter the so-called facts you tout, ran in Newsday and the NY Post. Botta spoke out against it as well. The only person here still holding on to this is you.

  8. BDGallof says:

    Where Bettman actually cited the Wilpons is them offering CitiField as a Winter Classic venue. Completely different issue and conversation

  9. BDGallof says:

    No Mets blogger or reporter have cited anything. but of course a respectable THN guy surely has an in there. Of course. Silly me.

    It is pretty much understood, despite denial, that Wilpons got very burned by Madoff and doesn’t have that much liquid to buy another team…much less a place to put them

    The problem is…people hear what they want to hear and try to make it so. Then they get upset with a bit of reality.

    No source was ever cited. It is PURE unadulterated conjecture.

    NY Isles are doing camp in China and Wang will be owner next season. Wang has a vested interest, besides the Newsday whinefest about losing cash which even if he admits he wishes he didn’t buy them….he is committed.

    The Isles also have a fish in the water for Willet’s Point….which might be why they have been dark since November. That would not preclude their sale either.

    David Shoalt’s piece in Globe and Mail was based on a NHL source who gave him info that the Isles were one of the team asking for a pre-payment vs their deal. I read it as well…and he and I have corresponded over it.

    • TPJM22 says:

      You hear what you want to hear. Did ya read Newsday today? HA HA

      • BDGallof says:

        Looks like Ken Campbell was dead right after all. My apologies. And nobody knew….except for
        THN’s Ken Campbell, Wilpon and Wang.

        I’ll happily be wrong for this type of result…especially if it leads to something. Above all, it finally explains the gone silent which we were hoping was productivity with Queens.

        Also shows that Brooklyn talk and rumors were a complete feint that many ate up.

  10. Mike from Philly says:

    Good stuff B.D. I hope your “fish in the water” comment leads to bigger things in Queens. Personally, I am getting tired of the B.S. in Uniondale and I am tired of every offseason being about stability rather then hockey.

  11. JoshC says:

    Everything has a price. For ELEVENTY BRAZILLION DOLLARS, I’m sure Wang would listen.

    Campbell’s a hack, though. There’s zero indication that Pete Karmanos is looking to sell Carolina; most word there is that he wants to wind down his day-to-day involvement with his business in Detroit and spend more time in Raleigh working on the team.

    Unfortunately, if Phoenix gets sold to Winnipeg it’s going to be even more open season for this kind of crap.

  12. iwearstripes says:

    While I don’t seriously believe the Isles will be on the block this summer,the argument that Ken Campbell’s piece lacks merit by failing to cite a source isn’t well supported by a phone call from a similarly anonymous source.

    When I read Ken’s piece, I read it as what it is: conjecture. He even states specifically:

    “reports that owner Charles Wang is ready to walk away from the franchise appear to be a little premature”

    This issue, to me, is indicative of the failure of our schools to teach students critical thinking. Even the title of the article “NHL facing glut of potential for-sale teams” indicates that this is speculation. A team that is potentially for sale is not necessarily for sale. For that matter, every team is potentially for sale, should a buyer offer the right price.

  13. BDGallof says:

    I think you are missing some reading comprehension as the focus of my piece is that conjecture does not equal news. Thus, Ken…who has had many a conjecture flub this season (cody Hodgsen to TO, Florida Panthers to make lots of trades) is not exactly helping himself with Isles fans.

  14. bigaudio says:

    the thing that nags at me about this entire ordeal is the underlying thought that the reason fans don’t go to islanders games is because of the arena they play in.

    IT’S NOT THE RINK THAT IS THE PROBLEM.

    Why is this simple logical fact so LOST on all islanders fans?

    We in the TofH do NOT want high rise buildings, we do NOT need MORE shopping malls, we do NOT want a casino, we do NOT want to pay for a millionaire sports team owner to bleed MORE cash from a floundering franchise. WE DO NOT!

    Get past this, and maybe i’d listen to your other points with more validity. Until then…. this is just another BLOG, with OPINIONS, just like the ones you cite as being crap.

    • Nick Giglia says:

      Until you stop clinging to the ridiculous fantasy that there is nothing wrong with the Coliseum, you have absolutely no credibility.

      “We in the TOH”? I live in the TOH and you don’t speak for me. In fact, every unbiased opinion poll says that the supporters of the Lighthouse Project outnumber opponents by a margin of 2:1. If you consider a scaled-down version support goes to 2.5:1.

      It’s really rich that you tell people that they need to “get past this” when you can’t get past one little bit of unassailable logic: the fact that you personally oppose the Lighthouse Project doesn’t mean jack for what the rest of your neighbors think.

      More people than not have said they want everything the Lighthouse Project would offer. You have insisted numerous times on this board that the arena isn’t the problem; you’ve in fact said repeatedly that there is “nothing wrong” with Nassau Coliseum as it currently exists. That’s just ridiculous. The quality of the arena isn’t the only issue affecting ATTENDANCE, and I’d argue the lack of a mass transit connection is the biggest problem for those of us who live or work in NYC, but you’ve conveniently spun the issue out of the main problem: the New York Islanders cannot and will not survive if they continue to playing in Nassau Coliseum as it currently is. It doesn’t matter whether or not you like that; it’s fact.

      • 19 Isle in NJ 22 says:

        Nick … after reading the post above yours … I just knew you’d have a rebutal. isle27 below your post also makes a great point.

        I think the biggest factor for the Isles not being competitive is the arena. Ranked 3rd worst when polled by the league’s players. What top tier elite player would want to play for the team with that reputation? How can the Isles improve the onice product that way? Thusly, how would they draw more fans to games with the inferior product due to the inability to attract those top tier players?

        That arguement has been settled a long time ago … but sometimes people need a refresher course. Great post Nick.

        • bigaudio says:

          that is total B.S.

          The arena is NOT the problem. No, its not the most modern, no it does not have tons of luxury suites, no the plumbing is not good, everyone knows that. But the fact remains, if a good team is put forth, the fans will come, regardless of luxury suites and mass transit. The building was sold out all those glory years when the team was winning consecutive cups, put a good team out there and you can play at Cantiague park and draw fans. The point is, no so-called “fair” surveys can change the fact that the residents do not want the lighthouse project as it was submitted. Some peole simply cannot accept that fact, and will spin it any which way they can. Polls and surveys don’t mean EXCREMENT. This town is bankrupt and full of corruption, our roads need to be fixed and there’s no money for it, we already have too many shopping malls, we don’t want high-rise buildings in our backyard. And that is the reality of the situation here, regardless of how you want to spin it. Tough shit. I guess the Isles have to move then. Bye bye.

          • Nick Giglia says:

            I’ll never cease to be amazed by your ability to continue to push delusional crap when faced with incontrovertible FACT. Are you on the TOH payroll? Kate? Al? Is that you?

            First of all, you’re deliberately trying to make this all about attendance when attendance isn’t the problem that the Lighthouse is trying to solve. Financially speaking, the current situation is untenable, and there are only 2 options when you build an arena and can’t recoup the funds straight from it: taxpayers fund the arena, or you develop the land to raise money.

            Your other false talking point is that the taxpayers are paying for the arena. Show me where it says that….oh, right, it doesn’t. The Lighthouse Project is meant to provide a situation where the taxpayers don’t have to cover the bill, except for selected infrastructure improvements, which every financial study ever done proves has a multiplier effect in economic activity.

            And here we go again with the “We” – I love how you claim opinion polls don’t mean EXCREMENT just because you disagree with the results. Who’s this “We”? Is it the opposition that never topped 25% in any poll, and never topped 30% in any in-person meeting? (That was only the last one – support at most meetings ran over 90%). I’m not spinning; I was THERE. I talked to the people who showed up at these meetings, and I read emails that people send me, both for and against (running over 95% for, by the way). Where were you? Have you ever taken an active role in trying to get your voice out there, or are you just bitching on some blog?

            I’ll say it again: I don’t care whether or not you personally support the project, but when you willingly deny facts and accuse us of spinning in the process, we have a big problem. Long Island is dying, and if you don’t want to propose some kind of reasonable alternative, and if you want to continue to look like a moron insisting that there’s no problem with the Nassau Coliseum at all, then you’re one of the biggest parts of the problem.

          • Isle27 says:

            Newsday has a piece today on something I mentioned last week on this blog and what REALLY is killing LI. 14 of the states top 20 pension recipients retired from LI school districts. One Superintendent has a pension of 316K a year. Funny how people with the political persuasion of Nick never point to the bloated salaries of the higher ups in the LI school system. I’ll ask once again does every little school district on LI need a Superintendent making these OBSCENE salaries then you wonder why your school taxes are through the roof, and don’t let them kid you it’s not “about the children” it’s about them getting their raises every year.

    • jethro09 says:

      The rink is a problem. And not only because nobody wants to go there to watch a bad team.

      Here’s the real problem with the Nassau Coliseum: even if the place sold out every seat every game, it still wouldn’t generate enough money for Wang to compete with many of the other teams in hockey. The building is antequated. It is burdened with a horrible lease. It has practically no luxury suites. The place is in the middle of nowhere and there is absolutely no corporate base to solicit corporate sponsors from to purchase the few luxury suites that are there. It’s just incapable of generating enough profit for Wang to keep the team competitive.

      Factor in the truth that the building is half-empty on most nights and you can see how the arena is not sufficent. And yes, while the fans have stayed away because of the mediocre on-ice product over the past 15 years, lots of them also stay away because they don’t want to spend top dollar to watch a game in a dump with crappy amenities, no restaraunts and no frills.

  15. Isle27 says:

    I think it’s true that if the Isles had the record that the Devils or the Red Wings have had for the past 15 years, including a few cups, then yes the fans would be showing up in a run down Coliseum but the problem is, even with more sellouts they probably would still be losing money so there is no argument from most (including the TOH politicians) that the Coliseum is inadequate and outdated and we need a new or refurbished one. Also I think it is true that there are stars in this league who will pass up playing with the Isles because of the outdated arena. The argument is what else gets built on that land along with a new Coliseum. I guess we will find out in a couple of weeks what the TOH is going to offer Wang and we will go from there. I think if you polled the people of the TOH and asked them if they would like to see the values of their homes reduced further the answer would be no. I think if you polled the people of the TOH and asked them if they would like added traffic in the area of the Meadowbrook and Hempstead Turnpike the answer would be no. The way a poll question is asked can have an affect on the poll. For instance asking someone if they are in favor of building the LH project which will bring jobs and lower taxes to the area what do you think they will answer.

  16. 19 Isle in NJ 22 says:

    BD – Great piece … What is always missing from those blog stories is a known source identity with credibility … It’s not hard for a writer to get them if they really want to validate a rumor.

    As soon as I read “according to a reliable source” … I tune out. I think CB has taught us die hards to ignore that by now. Thanks for putting the screws to that story.

  17. Steve says:

    http://www.newsday.com/wilpon-wang-talk-about-moving-islanders-to-queens-1.1907385?qr=1

    According to the above link, Mets owner Jeff Wilpon claims that he has had recent discussions with Wang for a possible relocation to Queens. Perhaps Ken campbell did not strike with his NY Mets Rumor du Jour

  18. Steve says:

    My apologies, Jeff Wilpon is NOT the owner of the Mets, but the CEO.

  19. Isles Fanatic says:

    BD,

    Any thoughts on the Newsday article confirming talks between the Mets people and Wang??

    • BDGallof says:

      Yes, wrote a whole blog about it. Best news I’ve heard in a while…and they played it close to their vest until Ken Campbell broke it in his blog.

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  21. RobJC says:

    Great post, BD….You’re right

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