Although the general public is not permitted to attend games this season because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Nets announced on Tuesday morning plans to honor essential workers who exemplify what it means to be "New York Tough."
Representatives from a variety of groups of essential workers will be in attendance for the Nets’ regular-season opener against Golden State on Tuesday night at Barclays Center.
Throughout the game, the Nets will identify and thank local essential workers, including medical personnel, nursing home attendants, MTA employees, sanitation workers and volunteers from community service organizations.
Several of these workers will be profiled during the pregame show on YES Network, the Nets’ local broadcast partner, as well as during the TNT national broadcast of the game and on NBA TV and the Nets’ and NBA’s social media channels.
The Nets and Barclays, which is the arena naming rights partner, have raised more than $2 million for COVID-19 relief efforts. All funds raised will be donated to Coalition for the Homeless, The Campaign Against Hunger, Good Shepherd Services, New York Cares and United Way’s COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund.
The Nets have dubbed the event "Barclays Essential Together," and John Abbamondi, CEO of Brooklyn Sports and Entertainment Global, said in a statement that it "reflects our collective gratitude for the selflessness displayed by all of New York’s essential workers this year, as well as our recognition of the fundamental human need to be together. Tonight, our entire organization . . . will honor these heroes who have embodied ‘New York Tough’ by continuing to serve others in order to keep our city going."
The Nets event is part of Barclays’ effort to provide immediate support to communities most impacted by COVID-19. In May, Barclays announced a $125 million Community Aid Package and since has partnered with non-profits and charities across the U.S. to deliver relief.