Welcome back! New Jersey Devils fans attend 1st game in nearly a year

Some New Jersey Devils fans could spectate a game live for the first time since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

News 12 Staff

Mar 3, 2021, 3:42 AM

Updated 1,234 days ago

Share:

Some New Jersey Devils fans could spectate a game live for the first time since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Prudential Center allowed fans to return on Tuesday following an executive order by Gov. Phil Murphy. The arena could normally hold around 20,000 fans, but only 1,800 could attend because of 10% capacity limits.
Fans were ecstatic to return to The Rock.
“Season ticket holder. Our last game we were here was March 6, so it’s been almost a year since our last game. We had to be here first game back,” says Neal Langer.
The fans had to stick to small groups for social distancing. But they said that it was worth it.
“I don’t care about the score tonight. I want the Devils to win, but I just want to be here,” says Robert Roth.
“It’s been tough to sit at home and watch these games on TV and want to be at the stadium. Everybody’s coming in, everybody’s got a smile under their mask,” says Jonathan Keats.
But the pandemic is still affecting business and the fans’ experiences. Among the pregame spots, only Redd’s Biergarten was open Tuesday night.
“We’re fortunate because we’re a big beer garden, 7,000-square feet. So, we do have a lot of room to social distance and space people,” says Daniel Palsi.
But Palsi says that his business hinges on crowds showing up for the Devils.
“I’m feeling optimistic, but still a little, maybe a little shell-shocked from the last year – a little cautious,” he says
The same could be said for those who operate the Prudential Center.
“We think this is a tremendous first step, being able to work with the governor’s team. But we built this to be scalable, and we’ve dragged it to be scalable to continue to take those numbers up while maintaining our safety-first priority,” says Devils President Jake Reynolds.
The Devils have sold out tickets for the month of March. Tickets for April are not yet on sale.
Seton Hall will take on UConn at the Prudential Center on Wednesday for Senior Night.


More from News 12