The only NBA team that has reduced crowd sizes is the Toronto Raptors, which, due to restrictions in Ontario, have a limited capacity of 50 percent.
European sports were facing similar disruptions. In England, where six of last weekend’s 10 Premier League games were postponed because the virus outbreak caused a shortage of players in teams, league officials have called on some clubs to cancel more matches. continued to be rejected, and a busy holiday season of matches remained in doubt.
In Scotland and Wales, government leaders announced they would impose significant restrictions on fans in stadiums starting on Sunday. Scottish sporting events will be “effectively spectator-free”, the country’s leader, Nicola Sturgeon, said, with crowds at outdoor events capped at 500 for three weeks. In Wales, all sporting events will now be held behind closed doors for the same period.
Such gatherings were banned in some parts of Germany for weeks. On Tuesday, however, Chancellor Olaf Scholz said Germany’s regional restrictions on spectators and crowds would go national from next Tuesday in the form of a set of strict new rules that would limit the size of New Year’s parties to 10 people, close bars and Will limit nightclubs, and empty the country’s football stadiums.
“It’s not a time for parties and casual evenings with a lot of people,” Scholz said.
Britain’s Conservative government, from critics over its handling of the pandemic and allies who have rejected the idea of a new lockdown, has shown little interest in reopening stadium doors ahead of a crowded holiday football event. And the Premier League seems to be following that lead.
“It is the collective intention of the league to continue with the current fixture program where safely possible,” the Premier League said after its clubs meeting on Monday. .
Coronavirus cases in the Premier League more than doubled last week from 42 to 90, and officials revealed that only three-quarters of the league’s players had received two vaccine doses and 16 percent were illiterate – a stark contrast from soccer leagues in Spain and Italy but also American leagues such as the NFL, NBA and NHL, which have generally reported vaccination rates of 95 percent or more.