Sound Tigers Oppose Bridgeport's Plan To Trade Sports For Concerts

Aug 10, 2017

The owner of Bridgeport, Connecticut’s Sound Tigers hockey team says the city’s plan for a concert amphitheater next to their arena is unfair. The Sound Tigers play at Webster Bank Arena in downtown Bridgeport, next door to the planned amphitheater.

In a letter to Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim published in the Connecticut Post, Sound Tigers owner Jon Ledecky said the city’s planned Harbor Yard Amphitheater would violate the non-compete clause of their contract.

The city plans to work with concert promoters Live Nation and former Sound Tigers President Howard Saffan on the project. At a press conference to announce the partnership, Ganim said the concert amphitheater isn’t meant to compete with the arena.

“This is about making Bridgeport the ultimate entertainment center venue throughout the state and beyond. And I think the arena, and the operation of the arena, are gonna benefit tremendously from this. And I hope they will. Honestly, they’re great guys and this ends up being a win win win for everyone.”

Live Nation Connecticut President Jim Koplik said the outdoor amphitheater would actually be good for Webster Bank Arena, which is an indoor venue.

“I’ve told them that will only put Bridgeport on the map. So when indoor shows do participate in the business, in the indoor months of the year, it’s more likely they will play Bridgeport.”

Developers say the amphitheater will open in 2019 and will host 29 concerts a year. It will replace the Ballpark at Harbor Yard, which has been the home of the Bridgeport Bluefish for 20 years.