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No plans for proof of vaccination for Raiders, Knights games

Updated August 12, 2021 - 8:32 pm

Sports teams in Las Vegas have not announced any plans that would require fans to have proof of vaccination to attend events.

This comes after Thursday’s announcement by AEG that its owned and operated venues and the Smith Center would require spectators to have proof of inoculation in order to attend indoor events.

The Review-Journal polled area pro and college teams and found none are ready to make any requirements of fans beyond the guidelines offered by the Center for Disease Control.

AEG is affiliated with Allegiant Stadium, where the Raiders play, and helped to build T-Mobile Arena, home of the Golden Knights. However, AEG said its mandate does not apply to those venues since they don’t operate them. It said the decision is left up to the teams.

The Raiders open the preseason on Saturday against the Seattle Seahawks at Allegiant. They won’t play at home again until their regular-season opener Sept. 13.

“Right now the focus is on Saturday’s game, which will be fully masked,” Raiders owner Mark Davis said. “We will see how that goes, and then see what happens beyond that.”

An NFL spokesman said there is no leaguewide mandate on vaccination proof as a requirement to attend games.

“The health and safety of everyone in the NFL family — fans, players, personnel — is our primary focus,” NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said in a text. “As we did last year, the league and clubs will continue to follow the latest guidance from local, state and federal public health authorities, including the CDC, with whom we are in regular contact.

“We are planning on full stadiums across the league this year but will remain flexible and adaptable as necessary.”

The Golden Knights said they had nothing official to announce on the matter. The Aviators did not respond to a request for comment.

The NBA Summer League, which lasts through Tuesday, has required proof of vaccinations for reporters who wished to attend postgame news conferences at the Thomas & Mack Center or Cox Pavilion this week. However, no such mandate has been made for fans attending the games.

A UNLV spokesperson said school officials haven’t made any decisions about vaccination requirements for its games at Allegiant Stadium or Thomas & Mack Center, but said the requirements will most likely be in line with state, county and campus guidelines. UNLV’s first football game is in three weeks.

One college added the vaccine requirement Thursday: Tulane became the first FBS program to require that fans show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a negative test to attend games this fall at the Louisiana campus.

A spokesperson for the Aces, who resume their season Sunday after the WNBA’s Olympic break, said there are no vaccine requirements for attending games at Mandalay Bay’s Michelob Ultra Arena, but spectators must wear masks.

Las Vegas Motor Speedway spokesman Jeff Motley said the track will not be requiring vaccination cards for now, although that is subject to change should the situation warrant for the Sept. 24-26 NASCAR South Point 400 weekend.

Lights FC owner Brett Lashbrook doesn’t expect his USL franchise, which plays at Cashman Field on Saturday, to change any safety guidelines.

“As an outdoor venue, we will follow whatever the local health district officials and government officials tell us to do,” he said. “We’re not looking to do anything above and beyond that.”

Mark Anderson, Vincent Bonsignore, Sam Gordon, Ben Gotz and Ron Kantowski contributed to this report.

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