Milwaukee Bucks announce plan for fans to attend games at Fiserv Forum

Fiserv Forum will be devoid of fans for Bucks game until further notice due to the COVID-19 pandemic.Mjs Buckstour 86095
Fiserv Forum will be devoid of fans for Bucks game until further notice due to the COVID-19 pandemic.Mjs Buckstour 86095 /

It’s been nearly a year since Milwaukee Bucks fans have been able to see their favorite team in person as a result of the coronavirus pandemic raging on throughout the world.

That wait is nearly over. Nick Williams of the Milwaukee Business Journal was the first to report Tuesday morning that the Bucks will start having limited fans in attendance for home games as soon as this month. Bucks president Peter Feigin announced the news during a panel discussion earlier today.

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As of now, the initial plan will be to have 25 percent of the capacity at Fiserv Forum occupied by fans and have anywhere between 3,000 to 5,000 fans in attendance for home games throughout the season.

As expected, there will be extensive safety measures in place to maintain social distancing both inside the arena and various stops around the concourse.

While expressing his surprise to have fan attendance at this juncture in the season, Feigin discussed the impact of having the arena one-fourth of the way filled and what it means for their business:

"“There’s no lightning in a bottle when we start out with 25%,” Feigin said. “It’s a losing proposition for the business, for the surrounding community, but it’s a start. It’s much better than zero on the event basis. We’re extremely optimistic. It’s definitely in the right direction.”"

The Milwaukee Bucks are the latest NBA team to announce limited fans can attend home games.

Before the Bucks’ announcement, there are currently nine NBA teams that have limited fans in attendance for home games around the league.

Feigin had previously discussed the hurdles of having games with no fans in attendance and the health orders around the city of Milwaukee that hamstrung the Bucks from putting a plan in place before the start of the season:

"“For us, attendance is a very big deal. Attendance is 45 percent of revenue for our NBA team. To play with no attendance would be a really challenging prospect for us.And that’s one of the scenarios. the city of Milwaukee has basically limited our occupancy to 250 people for the foreseeable future, especially as COVID-19 doesn’t go down.”"

Of course, it’s important to note that came during a time in which Wisconsin was reaching a fever pitch of positive COVID-19 cases around the state and in the city of Milwaukee. And the plans the Bucks have explored such as having outdoor spaces for fans to tailgate at distanced spots have yet to come to fruition at this time.

While this news is certainly better for the Bucks and their overall business, there will certainly be skepticism in how effective this whole strategy will be. The NBA as a whole is still trying to weather the storm of having the season go on as intended, even as teams are sidelined either due to positive tests or just contact tracing. Having fans in attendance certainly feels its working in odds of the health of everyone involved, but business rules all under these dire circumstances.

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Nearly a year after it was in effect, Bucks fans can now see their favorite team in action back in person. Doing so, though, will have to be done responsibly on both the organization and the fans themselves.