Islanders Lighthouse: Straight into Darkness

Michael Gasparino@gaspoCorrespondent IOctober 15, 2009

UNIONDALE, NY - AUGUST 04:  Fans rally for support at the Nassau Coliseum prior to marching to the Lighthouse project public hearing at the Adams Playhouse on the campus of Hofstra University on August 4, 2009  in Uniondale, New York.  (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

I was going to post something about how the Islanders have somehow managed to provide some positives despite an 0-1-3 start—one that included a blown three-goal, third-period lead—but then the news dropped on the Long Island Press website that the Lighthouse project is dead.

"Just when I thought I was out...they pull me back in."

The Oct. 3 deadline for Charles Wang's "certainty" came and went, and the season began.  But instead of writing about how John Tavares has been everything we expected and more, or how strong the penalty kill has looked, or how Rick DiPietro is making progress in practice, or how it's somewhat refreshing that one of the things the Islanders need to do is learn how to step on the other team's throat when they have it down, I'm writing about the Lighthouse.  Again.

So is just about every other blogger in the Blog Box and elsewhere, and rightly so, considering the importance of the project to the team's future.

I, for one, will hold off on the hand-wringing, the gnashing of teeth, the wailing or the pontificating.

Late Tuesday night, a Newsday blog post noted that no one from the Lighthouse was talking, but that a source close to the project said the project had not been abandoned.

You would think that after all the time and money and energy spent, Wang and the Lighthouse Development Corp. wouldn't just walk away, not this quickly.  And do you really think the Oct. 3 deadline was just a way to give Wang an out, so he could say, "Hey, we tried."

I doubt it.

Maybe Wang is indeed shifting personnel to other projects.  He said himself he would explore other options.  Word gets out, a story is posted on the web (on the site of a free newspaper, sure, but one that's done some good work), there's no immediate comment from the team—no denials as of 12:40 a.m. Thursday, anyway—and suddenly the stakes are raised even higher.  Maybe he's serious!  He can't wait on the Lighthouse forever.  He's making other plans!

It's just pressure.  It's Wang calling Kate Murray's bluff.

I'll show you how serious I am.

We'll see how this all pans out, but my sense is that it's just another move in the game that the Long Island Press says Wang is tired of playing.

For fans, though, it isn't a game.  We wish games were all we had to worry about.