When Massachusetts governor Charlie Baker and Boston mayor Kim Janey announced a May 29 full reopening on Monday, many local sports fans instantly turned their thoughts to the NBA and NHL playoffs. With the Celtics beating the Wizards in the play-in tournament Tuesday night, they would have the first chance to host a full crowd, with Game 4 of their first-round series against the Nets set for May 30.
However, that may not end up being the case. Speaking with Toucher & Rich Tuesday morning, Danny Ainge said the team will need league approval, not just local approval, to host a capacity crowd.
“I have heard the what the governor said,” Ainge said, in regards to filling up TD Garden. “But I haven’t heard that when it comes to NBA capacity, I’m not sure that we’re there yet.”
“There’s our state and then there’s our – the NBA and there’s all sorts of protocols and hoops to jump through,” Ainge continued. “So it’s pretty complicated. I’m not sure what that’s going to – how that’s going to work.”
As of May 17, no NBA team has hosted a full crowd this season, even in states that have fully reopened. However, some have started to cross the 50-percent threshold.
Even though a full arena may not happen, the number of fans admitted – which currently is 25 percent in the state of Massachusetts – could increase.
“I think that there’s a lot of protocols had to go through,” Ainge noted. “I did see a team got as many as eight or nine thousand in the game last night because they had an entire section or two that were all vaccinated people. And they were – those sections were filled to capacity. So I think there has been discussion about those types of options.”
You can listen to the full Toucher & Rich interview with Danny Ainge below:
Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at abarth@985TheSportsHub.com.