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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – It wasn’t much of a debate at all.
As New York City worked to restore services after Superstorm Sandy, most thought Thursday would be too soon for the Nets’ season opener against the Knicks at Barclays Center.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg agreed, announcing the postponement at a press conference Wednesday afternoon.
Brett Yormark, CEO of the Nets and Barclays Center, took to WFAN radio on Wednesday morning to defend the initial decision to open as scheduled. Twenty-four hours later, he acknowledged Bloomberg made the right call.
“Look, listen, it was the right decision,” Yormark told WFAN’s Boomer Esiason and Craig Carton. “I’m glad the mayor got us to rethink what we had decided earlier, and we move on.”
LISTEN: Yormark with Boomer & Carton
After Sandy ripped through the Tri-State area, leaving devastation in its wake, the NBA announced there would be no change for the debut of Brooklyn’s new franchise.
The reaction was swift and overwhelmingly critical. Detractors cited those severely affected by the storm, and the nearly impossible chance of full restoration to the city’s transit system or power grid by tipoff — not to mention other public services strained to the max.
At Bloomberg’s recommendation, the NBA, Nets and Barclays Center agreed to change course and postpone the game.
“Craig, I agree with you. And listen, you know what? No one’s perfect,” Yormark said to Carton, who on Wednesday blasted the original call as “offensive.”
“I think after just further assessment and further evaluation we decided that this was the right thing to do,” Y0rmark added. “And I appreciate your candor yesterday, and appreciate you guys supporting us.”
PALLADINO: In wake of Sandy, we need sports
Instead of opening against the rival Knicks, the Nets will host the Toronto Raptors on Saturday night. Doors will open on at 5:30 p.m., and Yormark said there’s a “robust bus plan” in the works with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority.
“It’ll be as dramatic as it would’ve been on Thursday,” Yormark said. “The fans are waiting for it. … Maybe it’s going to be better because more fans are going to be able to come out, and if that’s the case then I’m glad we made that decision.”
Yormark said he hoped to announce a rescheduled date with the Knicks “in the next couple of days.”
The Knicks’ home opener at Madison Square Garden is scheduled for Friday night against Miami.
Your thoughts on the decision to postpone Nets-Knicks? Be heard in the comments below…