76ers to allow full capacity beginning with Game 5 against the Wizards

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76ers to allow full capacity for Game 5 against the Wizards originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington

Teams all around the nation are beginning the slow yet exciting process of allowing full capacity at their home arenas. In Philadelphia, the 76ers have announced they will allow 100% of fans to return to Wells Fargo Center beginning June 2, the same day as a possible Game 5 vs. Washington.

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“There is no better time to welcome home our passionate and loyal fans than right now, in the midst of what we hope will be a historic playoff run,” read a statement from Chris Heck, the 76ers president of business operations. Philadelphia currently leads the Wizards 2-0 in the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs, meaning a game 5 might not even happen. The 76ers have their eyes on a sweep of Washington, but the series comes to the nation’s capital for games 3 and 4, beginning Saturday.

Philadelphia joins a litany of other NBA teams that have welcomed fans back home with close to full capacity. Per NBA reporter Marc Stein, Atlanta leads the list percentage-wise with 92% of fans allowed inside State Farm Arena. In terms of pure numbers, Dallas and Miami top the NBA with crowds of upwards of 17,000 coming out to see the Mavericks and Heat.

Fans returning in droves comes at an interesting time for the NBA, as a long list of fan miscues has marred an otherwise flawless playoff slate. In Philadelphia, a fan threw popcorn at an injured Russell Westbrook. In New York, a Knicks fan spat on Trae Young. And recently, a judge just announced the dismissal of a case involving a pair of Utah fans that were banned from attending Jazz games for taunting Westbrook in 2019.

It’s been a long time since full capacity stadiums have been the norm. Fans and players alike live for the atmosphere of a rocking arena during an intense playoff game. However, with the allowance of full capacity comes the expectation that those fans will conduct themselves properly.