Coronavirus Update New York City: Barclays Center welcoming Nets fans inside for the first time in nearly a year

Coronavirus Update New York City: Barclays Center welcoming Nets fans inside for the first time in nearly a year

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) — The Nets will host their first home game with fans in nearly a year tonight at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

The arena has been used for voting over the past year. Otherwise it’s been quiet.

And it’s not just basketball fans who are excited – think about all of the surrounding businesses!

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Any arena in the state with more than 10,000 seats can now allow guests back inside at 10-percent of capacity, with major precautions.

Those include a mandatory PCR test from each attendee within 72 hours of game time.

At Barclays Center, the Nets are providing a free rapid test to anyone who walks through the door.

And when you get inside, you’ll find assigned, socially distanced seating.

There will be three main seating areas, with those areas divided into pods of two or four fans each.

“You will have a QR code that you will have on your phone,” said Barclays Center General Manager Adina Erwin. “And you will be able to look at the menu, order your food, and food then will be brought to you. So it’s more of an in-seat service.”

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And the Nets have James Harden on the team this year. Needless to say, he is excited about this development along with everyone else.

“I can’t wait! I’m excited!” he said. “It’s one of the reasons why I wanted to be in Brooklyn, because of the fan base. They’re unbelievable. Just to have some excitement, some extra energy in the crowd is going to be exciting, obviously for the entire team.”

The Nets will start with several hundred fans tonight, ramping up to 1800 people in the stands after the all-star break.

Madison Square Garden is gearing up for fans as well.

The Knicks will host the Golden State Warriors in front of roughly 2,000 fans Tuesday, followed by the Rangers on February 26 vs. the Boston Bruins.

New Jersey isn’t far behind New York, allowing fans inside starting Monday, with 10 percent capacity indoors and 15 percent capacity outdoors.

Meanwhile, New Yorkers are getting another option for entertainment as well.

Movie theaters are allowed to reopen at 25-percent capacity starting next week after having been closed for nearly a year.

Masks and assigned seating will be required.

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