PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — With a big win over the Washington Wizards in Game 5, the Sixers have advanced in the NBA playoffs. They did it without an injured Joel Embiid and in front of 15,000 fans.
Sixers fans had plenty to cheer about Wednesday night. It also marked the first home game with close to full capacity in more than a year.READ MORE: More Than 40 Restaurants Dishing Up Delicious Deals During Burlington County Restaurant Week
Though the Wells Fargo Center was able to host Game 5 at 100% capacity, the stadium’s general manager says they were pretty close to it with some restrictions still in place on the floor.
About 15,000 fans were in the stands. Typically, 100% capacity is around 21,000 fans.
It looked like business as usual inside the Wells Fargo Center.
On Wednesday, Philadelphia ended its COVID-19 restrictions — a change Sixers fans say helped their team advance to the Eastern Conference semifinals after the Game 5 win over the Wizards.
“I’m feeling electric. We’re going to the finals, it’s our year,” fan Tyler Matthews said.READ MORE: 'An Unbelievable Friend': Football Coach Remembers 12-Year-Old Tyler Norton, Killed In Pottstown House Fire
“I’m feeling good but I’d be feeling better if my boy Embiid was playing. But you know, it’s a good team effort, a good win,” fan Priz Wiliams said.
But with fans being allowed back in the arena, there have been multiple incidents involving fans, including in Philadelphia.
The NBA says it will no longer tolerate anything that jeopardizes a safe and respectful environment for both spectators and players.
Wells Fargo Center General Manager Phil Laws says he’s in agreement.
“It isn’t acceptable in any NBA arena, and we’ll be keeping a close eye particularly on the court entrances and exits off and making sure that we follow all of the mandates coming from the NBA in terms of security,” Laws says.
Philly fans get a bad rep but they’re grateful things are starting to get back to normal.MORE NEWS: Open For Business: Bussinger Trains Uses Pandemic To Take On New Direction
“I have both of my vaccine shots and I’m good. I have no concerns, I’m glad everybody’s back,” fan Anthony Starks said.