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Mayor: NYC teams must wait for eased COVID mandates

Jan 10, 2022; Bronx, New York, USA; New York City Mayor Eric Adams and other officials speak to the media at the Twin Parks North West apartment building in the Bronx Jan. 10, 2022. Seventeen people died in a fire in the building on Sunday. The fire was believed to have been caused by a defective space heater which caused heavy smoke conditions throughout the building. Mandatory Credit: Seth Harrison-USA TODAY
Credit: The Journal News-USA TODAY NETWORK

With baseball season and the NBA playoffs approaching, New York City’s professional sports teams are still waiting for loosened COVID-19 vaccination rules.

“We’re not there yet,” New York mayor Eric Adams said Tuesday when asked about rolling back the private sector mandate that prohibits unvaccinated players from competing in home games.

If nothing changes by Opening Day next month, any unvaccinated members of the New York Yankees and Mets will have to follow in the footsteps of Brooklyn Nets star Kyrie Irving, who has been unable to play at the Barclays Center.

“Right now, we’re going to take some complaints,” Adams said. “But when this is all said and done, people are going to realize this is a thoughtful administration and we got it right. So baseball, basketball, businesses, all of those things, they have to wait until that layer comes.”

The Yankees’ home opener is April 7 and the Mets’ first home game is April 15. The NBA playoffs begin on April 12 with the play-in tournament.

New York City’s COVID-19 infection rate has been climbing, rising 50 percent over the past week, according to ESPN. The city is averaging about 950 new cases per day.

–Field Level Media