Rick Pitino planning for St. Johns-UConn at Carnesecca Arena next season in stunning move
Carnesecca Arena is going to get a high-profile league game next year.
After St. Johns knocked off Hofstra, 84-79, at UBS Arena on Saturday, Rick Pitino made the surprise announcement that he plans to play Connecticut in the small on-campus gym next year rather than Madison Square Garden.
Asked if he was serious about that, Pitino responded: 100 percent. Were playing them at Carnesecca. Its definitely not a joke. I have my reasons.
Pitino was being asked about the different venues St. Johns plays at, and if he was disappointed about the limited crowd of 7,486 at UBS Arena on Saturday.
We didnt sell-out against Xavier. We didnt have anybody come to Barclays Center. We dont have an abundance of fans, he said. Were not UConn or Villanova with fans, and theres a reason. We lost the brand. Louie Carnesecca has been gone a long time. So we got to build the brand back and the people will come back.
3Rick Pitino made a bold statement about where he wants the St. John’s-UConn matchup to take place next season. Robert Sabo for the NY Post3St. John’s hasn’t hosted UConn at Carnesecca Arena since 1990. APThis is a fabulous place. Locker rooms are great everything about it is great. We only had like 7,400 people today. At Barclays Center we had 54 of my family and friends, and 11 people from St. Johns. So the Garden is the best place to play, and right now the only game thats going to be played next year at Carnesecca is Connecticut. Every other game were going to negotiate.
Connecticut fans have taken over the Garden since the Huskies returned to the Big East in 2020.
This would be one way to neutralize them.
3Dan Hurley and the Huskies will face St. John’s at the Garden on Feb. 3. APThe two teams meet this year at MSG on Feb. 3.
St. John’s last played UConn at Carnesecca Arena in 1990.
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