September Sports Calendar

NYC Sports

by Jonathan Zeller, 08/20/2013

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Whether or not you are personally ready for some football, there will be plenty in New York City this September as the NFL and college seasons kick into gear. The Jets and Giants both open their campaigns this month, as their home, MetLife Stadium, prepares to host the Super Bowl for the first time in February. As for the game the rest of the world calls football, Major League Soccer's Red Bulls are hitting the homestretch of their season, with the Supporters' Shield still in their sights. Also in September: the NHL's Islanders play their first-ever game in Brooklyn, hosting the Devils in an exhibition. They're set to move to Kings County (which is geographically, if not politically or spiritually, on Long Island) for good by 2015. And in Queens and the Bronx, the Mets and Yankees finish their regular seasons before New Yorkers endure another long winter without baseball. For details about these and the rest of the month's sporting events, read on.

US Open
US Open. Courtesy, Getty Images

US Open Tennis Championships
When: August 26–September 9
Where: Billie Jean King USTA National Tennis Center
Millions watch the US Open not only to see great tennis but to be part of an event that has produced icons—like the Williams sisters and Rafael Nadal—who have ascended from mere sports stardom to full-blown celebrity. Make sure to get your tickets early if you want good seats for prime matches.

New York Mets Baseball
When: All month long
Where: Citi Field
New York Yankees Baseball
When: All month long
Where: Yankee Stadium
The Mets and Yankees finish their regular seasons in September. For the Yankees, there's still hope that they might climb their way into the second wild card playoff spot, and the month gives fans one last chance to see Mariano Rivera—and, perhaps, a certain controversial third baseman—in pinstripes. (That's not even to mention Robinson Canó, one of's favorite Yankees.) Mets fans, meanwhile, may wind down their season by dreaming of the future. The team has played better after a rough start, top catching prospect Travis d'Arnaud has joined up-and-coming infielder Wilmer Flores in the lineup and pitchers Zack Wheeler and Matt Harvey are holding down the rotation—at least until they hit their innings limits. The month also brings the tail end of the New York–Penn League season, with a home Cyclones game against Aberdeen September 1. Both Brooklyn and Staten Island would continue playing deeper into the month were they to make the playoffs.
[Update, 8/27: Oof. Matt Harvey has a partial tear of his UCL and is out for at least the rest of this season.]

WWE Live
When: September 8
Where: Barclays Center
Stars of TV wrestling—CM Punk and John Cena among them—come to Brooklyn to show off their blend of athleticism and theatricality.

New York Giants Football
When: All month long
Where: MetLife Stadium
New York Jets Football
When: All month long
Where: MetLife Stadium
New York's NFL teams hit the gridiron once again. For the Jets, Mark "Mr. Handsome" Sanchez—whose 2012 season wasn't so pretty—may or may not start under center in the opener against Tampa Bay on September 8. Rookie Geno Smith has challenged Sanchez in the preseason and could get the job during what many pundits see as a rebuilding year for Gang Green. The Giants, meanwhile, hope to reach the playoffs after missing narrowly in 2012; Eli Manning and company open up their home slate on September 15 with another installment of the Manning Bowl, against his brother Peyton and the Denver Broncos.

Red Bulls
New York Red Bulls. Photo: Brad Penner

New York Red Bulls Soccer
When: September 14 and 22
Where: Red Bull Arena
New York Cosmos Soccer
When: September 7, 14 and 29
Where: Shuart Stadium
Thierry Henry and the Red Bulls remain in a tight race for the top spot in the Eastern Conference table. Their campaign is coming to a close (October is the last month of the regular season), so getting three points each in home matches against Toronto and Dallas may be crucial to their title hopes. With a strong finish, the Red Bulls could snag the Supporters' Shield as the team with the best regular-season record in Major League Soccer, earning a berth in the CONCACAF Champions League. After the September 22 game, the FDNY and NYPD soccer teams will compete in their annual "Battle on the Pitch" at Red Bull Arena. Out on Long Island, meanwhile, the revived Cosmos hope to continue their strong start—they sold out their home opener on the campus of Hofstra University and earned a win and a draw in their first two matches as part of the North American Soccer League, the second division of professional soccer in the United States.

College Football
When: All month long
Where: MetLife Stadium and citywide
College football season hits its stride in September. Local games include the Urban League Football Classic at MetLife Stadium, which features historically black institutions Virginia State University and Benedict College; the Liberty Cup in the Bronx between New York City's own Fordham and Columbia—whose roster includes Brett Nottingham, a promising quarterback transfer from Stanford; and on Staten Island, games on September 6 and 28 for the defending Northeast Conference champion Wagner Seahawks.

Gotham Girls
Gotham Girls Roller Derby. Photo: Tom Igoe

Gotham Girls Roller Derby
When: September 7
Where: CCNY Nat Holman Gymnasium
The competitors of Gotham Girls Roller Derby skate fast and hit hard. You may not know what a jammer, blocker and pivot are when you enter the gym, but longtime followers can tell you that it may not be long before these ladies turn you into a hard-core fan. And as if the action in the rink weren't enough, the event also features spirit-boosting jeerleaders.

NYC Century Bike Tour
NYC Century Bike Tour. Photo: Alan Wechsler

Cycling and Running Events
When: All month long
Where: Citywide
Those looking to stay in shape by running and biking are in luck this month. For cyclists, there's the NYC Century Bike Tour on September 8, which boasts a variety of scenic routes, with starts at Prospect Park and Central Park; and, on September 21, Escape New York, which begins at Sakura Park in Manhattan and—as its name suggests—travels on routes through Bergen and Rockland Counties, outside the City. For runners, the month's New York Road Runners events include the Marathon Tuneup in Central Park, an 18-mile run on September 15.

New York Islanders vs. New Jersey Devils (preseason)
When: September 21
Where: Barclays Center
The long-awaited first hockey game at Brooklyn's new arena finally arrives, as John Tavares and the Islanders—future regular season tenants on Flatbush Avenue—host the Devils in an exhibition game. It's fans' first chance to see how the venue's unusual hockey layout works on game days.

Looking Ahead:
October 6: Mayor's Cup Cross Country Championships, Van Cortlandt Park
October 5–6: Matthew Sapolin Wheelchair Basketball Tournament, Manhattan College
October 28: Rangers home opener vs. Montreal Canadiens, Madison Square Garden
October 30: Knicks home opener vs. Milwaukee Bucks, Madison Square Garden
November 1: Nets home opener vs. Miami Heat, Barclays Center
November 3: ING New York City Marathon, Citywide
November 16–17: NYC Mayor's Cup Soccer All-Star Games, Poly Prep

November 27 and 29: Preseason NIT, Madison Square Garden
December 1: Kentucky vs. Providence basketball, Barclays Center
December 5: Nets vs. Knicks, Barclays Center
December 28: Pinstripe Bowl, Yankee Stadium
January 26, 2014: Devils vs. Rangers, Yankee Stadium
January 29, 2014: Islanders vs. Rangers, Yankee Stadium
February 2, 2014: Super Bowl XLVIII, MetLife Stadium
March 2014: NCAA Tournament, Madison Square Garden
Spring 2015: New York City FC (Major League Soccer), site TBA

related venues/(8)

  1. 1
    Citi Field
    126th St. and Roosevelt Ave.
    Flushing – Flushing
    NY 11368
  2. 2
    Yankee Stadium
    1 E. 161st St.
    Bronx – South Bronx
    NY 10451
  3. 3
    Barclays Center
    620 Atlantic Ave.
    Brooklyn – Prospect Heights
    NY 11217
  1. 4
    MetLife Stadium
    One MetLife Stadium Drive
    NJ 07073
  2. 5
    CCNY Nat Holman Gym
    138th St
    Manhattan – Harlem
  3. 6
    Prospect Park
    95 Prospect Park West
    Multiple Locations
    NY 11215
  1. 7
    Central Park
    Between Fifth Ave. and Central Park West
    Manhattan – Central Park
    NY 10024
  2. 8
    Sakura Park
    W 122nd St and Riverside Dr
    Manhattan – Morningside Heights
    NY 10027

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