When the NHL unveiled plans for its 2018 Winter Classic , New York garnered attention not only because the Big Apple was deemed the host of the 10th annual outdoor game but also because two “local” teams, the New York Rangers and Buffalo Sabres, were slated to square off with each other.
Now, it has been made apparent that the Sabres — not the Rangers — will be counting the Classic as a home game, even though the event will take place at Citi Field, home of baseball’s New York Mets and hundreds of miles away from Buffalo.
The likely reason, according to state property tax laws unearthed by Jon Campbell of the Rochester Democrat & Chronicle?
But handing the Sabres “home ice” at Citi Field was hardly for better marketing or for either team to pocket a small chunk of change.
No, instead, the most obvious reason for Buffalo dropping its 2017-18 regular-season slate at KeyBank Center to 40 games appears to be neither the teams nor the NHL wanting to risk Madison Square Garden, the Rangers’ home arena, losing a property-tax exemption of more than $40 million.
Basically, as Campbell outlines with state law citations, if any Rangers home games are played outside of Madison Square Garden, property taxes would immediately kick in against that arena.
Author: Cody Benjamin
Published: Thu May 11 2017 20:44:20 GMT-0400 (EDT)