Monday, June 14, 2021

Knicks planning second-round playoff sellouts to vaccinated fans only

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Knicks owner James Dolan is hellbent on filling the Garden to capacity if the Knicks make the second round.

Which means if a Knicks fan hasn’t had full vaccinations, he or she can’t go.

With the Knicks’ sizable and boisterous crowds becoming a national conversation, the Knicks announced they will sell second-round tickets to only vaccinated fans. No socially distanced sections will be available and the Garden will be at a virtual capacity if they get my Atlanta.

The Garden’s capacity is 19,040.

First, the Knicks would have to advance past the Hawks. The series pivots to Atlanta on Friday night even at one game each.

The Knicks quietly raised their capacity to 16,254 for Game 2 adding more seats behind the basket and putting together a couple of more vaccinated sections. Game 1’s capacity was 15,043.

Knicks fans celebrate during Game 1 of the series against the Hawks on May 23, 2021
Knicks fans celebrate during Game 1 of the series against the Hawks on May 23, 2021
AP

The unvaccinated sections contain socially distanced seatings.

The Knicks also announced Game 5 is already sold out at the 16,000-plus capacity.  The first two games marked the largest indoor crowds to gather in New York since the start of the pandemic.  As it is, the Garden has been as loud if not louder as it’s been in years, dating to the last playoff game in 2013.

“Given the enthusiastic response to vaccination requirements, should they advance past round one, tickets will be sold exclusively to fully-vaccinated individuals,’’ the statement read.

The Knicks started the season’s first 14 games with no fans. The cap for the final 22 regular-season games was 1,980. Original plans by Gov. Cuomo was for the Knicks to cap it at 5,700 for the playoffs but the pandemic rules got fast-tracked.



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