Saturday December 9, 2023

CDC Mask Update Huge For Fans, Leagues

  • The Centers for Disease Control said that vaccinated people can gather indoors without masks.
  • Many teams responded by increasing their allowed capacity at games.
Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports/Design: Alex Brooks
Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

The Centers for Disease Control issued new guidance last week stating that vaccinated people may go maskless indoors — an announcement with huge implications for sports leagues as they emerge from a tough year. 

The NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, and NCAA lost more than $14 billion in combined revenue due to fans being unable to attend games. Now, many teams are already experimenting with wider capacity.

  • MLB: The Phillies, Twins, and Brewers laid out plans to increase to 100% capacity by June or July. The Braves, Diamondbacks, Nationals, and Rangers were already at or on the path to full capacity.
  • NBA: The Bucks and Mavericks will allow around 9,000 fans — roughly 50% capacity — for the playoffs, which begin May 22. The Jazz will double capacity to around 13,000.
  • NHL: The Blues and Predators will increase playoff capacity to 9,000 and 12,135, respectively. 
  • NFL: The league had already planned for full-capacity stadiums at the start of next season.

The Chicago Cubs and White Sox are going up to 60% capacity by the end of the month. Both allow fully vaccinated fans to sit closer together in a special section, as do the New York Yankees and Mets, the Los Angeles Dodgers, and several other teams, some of which partner with the tech company CLEAR on a vaccine verification system.

Many businesses, including Starbucks, Costco, Trader Joe’s, Walmart, and Publix, said they would drop their mask requirement for vaccinated people, and use an honor system in lieu of verifying vaccination status. Most casinos on the Las Vegas Strip have dropped mask requirements, too.

The Yankees had a recent outbreak in which eight staff members and shortstop Gleyber Torres tested positive for COVID-19, despite all being fully vaccinated. The CDC said that a small number of these “breakthrough” infections are to be expected.

Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

What to Read


Deadspin Alters Controversial ‘Black Face’ Story Amid Legal Threat

After over a week of outrage, Deadspin changed a story many perceived as an attack on a young Kansas City Chiefs fan.

Goodell Makes ‘MNF’ Visit To Help Jaguars in $2B Stadium Talks

The Jaguars are exploring a $2 billion stadium deal.
The Chicago Bears logo is seen prior to a game against the New York Jets at Soldier Field.

Yet Another Proposal for A New Bears Stadium: The Parking Lot

Popular tailgating site becomes latest stadium site possibility for NFL team.

Ex-Jags Employee Accused of Stealing $22M, Going on Massive Shopping Spree

Executive accused of using team funds to fund lavish personal lifestyle.
podcast thumbnail mobile
Front Office Sports Today

Golf World in Chaos After Jon Rahm Joins LIV


Featured Today

The College Football Playoff is considering rotating TV networks for the national championship game.

CFP Considers Super Bowl-Like Rotation For National Championship Game

Multiple networks could share rights to the championship game, sources told FOS.
Brett Favre
November 27, 2023

Favre Welfare Case Hold-Up? “AG’s Office Has Not Expressed Interest In Pursuing”

The DOJ interviewed Brett Favre in early 2020.
The future of the Pac-12 rests on a court decision.
November 24, 2023

The Pac-12 Plays Its Final Regular-Season Game. Then A Court Decides Its Fate.

The conference’s future rests with a court decision.
Lane Kiffin
November 9, 2023

Ole Miss, Lane Kiffin Lawyers Argue for Dismissal of Player Lawsuit

FOS obtained audio of Lane Kiffin’s interaction with the player behind lawsuit.


Powered By

Careers in Sports

Looking for a new job? Check out these featured listings and search for openings all over the world.
Multiple Locations
Multiple Locations
Creative Artists Agency
Multiple Locations
FC Barcelona vs. Real Madrid in Texas.

FC Barcelona, Real Madrid Set AT&T Stadium Soccer Attendance Record

Sixth Street organized the match as part its U.S. Soccer Champions Tour.
November 14, 2022

Vegas Resorts Going All Out for Formula 1 Grand Prix

MGM Resorts will build a grandstand for the Las Vegas Grand Prix.
A young fan holds a sign for Julio Rodriguez during the 2023 MLB Home Run Derby.
July 12, 2023

MLB Median Ticket Buyer Down to 43 Years Old

Games are shorter and higher scoring thanks to new rules.

NHL’s Chris Foster on Amplifying Content Distribution With Automation

Learn how the NHL is using WSC Sports to increase fan engagement.

How QuintEvents is Changing the Game of Premium Fan Experiences

Over the last decade, we’ve seen a noticeable shift in the psyche…
October 7, 2022

MLB Attendance Pops Up, But Falls Below 2019 Levels

MLB attendance rose from 2021, but still lagged behind 2019 levels.
September 16, 2022

Baron Davis, Michele Roberts Help Launch Fan Controlled Hoops

The league will begin its inaugural season on Feb. 7, 2023 in Atlanta.

Webinar: How to Improve the Fan Experience at the Stadium and Online

Learn how pro sports teams are improving the fan experience.