Raptors to no Longer Play in Front of Fans as COVID Cases on the Rise
Well, that certainly didn’t take long.
Just a few short weeks into the NBA season, the Toronto Raptors will no longer allow fans at their games at the Amalie Arena in Tampa as Florida COVID-19 cases are on the rise.
Truly, a devastating blow to all who were eager to watch the 2-6 Raptors live.
The Raptors share the arena with the reigning NHL Stanley Cup Champion Tampa Bay Lightning who will also play in an empty arena as the season is set to start up. Florida reported an astounding 20,000 new COVID-19 cases on Friday as the state has surpassed the 1.4 million cases mark since the beginning of the pandemic.
“We are not comfortable bringing large numbers of fans indoors to watch hockey or basketball right now,” said Steve Griggs, CEO for Vinik Sports Group and the Lightning. “We are hopeful to reopen the arena soon after we see declining rates and better overall numbers.”
The New Orleans Pelicans and Houston Rockets remain as some of the handful of NBA teams to still allow fans to watch games in attendance.