MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Neither the Memphis Tigers nor Grizzlies schedules have been released for the 2020-2021 season. However, we’re getting a better idea of what the FedEx Forum will look like when play starts in the middle of the pandemic.
New COVID-19 policies will be implemented at the FedExForum. According to a news release, the policies will remain in effect for the foreseeable future for all events at the FedExForum. This includes Memphis Grizzlies games, Memphis Tigers basketball games, concerts, and other shows.
“The team is definitely excited,” Memphis Tiger Landers Nolley II said.
The Memphis Tigers hosted a virtual Memphis Madness Thursday which was a longshot from the event at FedEx Forum every year. It had the same showmanship, just fewer fans.
The players have their hopes high to get back playing in front of crowds at the Forum.
“We’re hoping these next 14 days that we actually get there and it won’t be excitement it will be a reality,” Nolley II said.
Guests will wear face masks, stay socially distant from other groups, and frequent handwashing will be recommended.
Part of this policy is constant with the face mask health order and directive number two issued by the Shelby Co. Health Dept.
Basketball, concerts and events will look different at the FedEx Forum for the foreseeable future. The Forum released now policies including crowd limits which means only 20 percent of the area will be full as ticketed seats will be spaced six feet apart. Face masks will be mandatory. The Forum will eliminate paper tickets and use only mobile tickets to scan fans in, and go to contactless concession stand transactions.
Guests will be able to remove their face masks when eating or drinking. The NBA said face shields and bandanas will not serve as appropriate face masks.
Staff and guests will be expected to maintain at least six feet of distance from other groups and individuals at all times. Ticketed seats will be six feet apart. Seating capacity within the FedExForum will be about 20 percent.
There have also been 300 hand sanitation stations set up around the arena.
“We have worked closely with the Grizzlies from early on, in particular with their physician in charge,” Shelby County Health Department Director Dr. Alisa Haushalter said.
FedExForum said they switched to mobile ticketing last season, however, ticket purchases at the box office will be given to guests via text or email at the time of purchase.
Guests are also encouraged to arrive early to events to reduce wait times.
In the near future, the FedExForum will be adding contactless concession stands. Until they are installed, the concession stands will be offering prepackaged food and drink items. No refills on popcorn or soda will be offered.
The FedEx Forum said the policies reflect both local mandates in place and arena policies released by the NBA.
It’s unclear what will be the first event at the Forum observing these regulations. Events and concerts are canceled or postponed and Grizzlies and Tigers' schedules have not been released. Forum officials said it’s likely to be a basketball game.
“Once we step on the court, we’re going to give it our all and play basketball,” Nolley II said.
No changes have been made to the bag policy.
The NBA has previously announced its season will start Dec. 22.