Nassau Coliseum will be filled to almost half of its capacity for the playoffs after Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced at his news conference in Manhattan on Monday that 50% of the tickets will be reserved for fully vaccinated people.
"Congratulations to the Islanders," Cuomo said. "They are a great New York team."
The Islanders were still working out the final number for attendance, but it will be approximately 6,800.
"Thank you for saying yes to Islanders nation today," said Islanders co-owner Jon Ledecky, who appeared with Cuomo at the news conference.
Specifically, Cuomo announced that 50% of playoff tickets will be available to fully vaccinated people who must remain three feet apart. The other 50% will be available to non-vaccinated people, who must remain socially distanced at six feet.
All fans in attendance must wear masks.
The Islanders said playoff tickets will go on sale later this week and they will be available solely to season-ticket subscribers. The NHL playoffs are expected to begin either Saturday or Sunday, but the Islanders will play their first two games on the road.
The Coliseum, which has a capacity of 13,913 for hockey, has been hosting at 10% of capacity since March 18. Cuomo previously announced that indoor arenas would be allowed to host at 25% of capacity starting on May 19, which would likely be when the Islanders host Game 3 of their first-round series.
"Yes! Yes! Yes! I wrote a letter last week on this topic and I’m excited that the State is now moving to increase capacity at Nassau Coliseum in time for the playoffs," Nassau County Executive Laura Curran said in a statement. "The more residents continue to roll up their sleeves, the quicker we’ll able to get to 100% capacity for everything."
"Today’s news is wonderful news to our fans, the most passionate and loyal in all sports," Ledecky said. "It’s a fitting tribute to our fans they can be at the Coliseum in big numbers and celebrate the memories they’ve had over the years. They are going to rock the barn one more time at Fort Neverlose."
The Islanders will move into UBS Arena at Belmont Park next season.
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