FILE – In this file photo dated October 5, 2019, fans are seen from a general view of the Chase Center during the second half of a pre-season NBA basketball game between the Golden State Warriors and the Los Angeles Lakers in San Francisco. Professional hockey and basketball teams rarely bring fans back to the arena after California approved the return of live performances in April. However, theaters and music venues appear to be more cautious given capacity and safety concerns. The San Francisco Golden State Warriors and Los Angeles Lakers said on social media that they are working with local health officials to welcome fans but couldn’t provide any further details.




FILE – In this file photo dated October 5, 2019, fans walk outside the Chase Center prior to a preseason NBA basketball game between the Golden State Warriors and the Los Angeles Lakers in San Francisco. Professional hockey and basketball teams rarely bring fans back to the arena after California approved the return of live performances in April. However, theaters and music venues appear to be more cautious given capacity and safety concerns. The San Francisco Golden State Warriors and Los Angeles Lakers said on social media that they are working with local health officials to welcome fans but couldn’t provide any further details.

By JANIE HAR and AMY TAXIN Associated Press

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) – Emily Redenbach had to watch her beloved Los Angeles Kings ice hockey team play on television last year without the camaraderie of other season ticket holders who have become her friends.

“It’s not the same, but that’s the best I can do with hockey,” said Redenbach, 35.

But starting April 15, Redenbach and other loyal sports fans may be able to return to a big arena to cheer on their team after California lifted its ban on live indoor events. The Kings, as well as the San Francisco Golden State Warriors and the Los Angeles Lakers have announced that they are working with health officials to welcome fans back.

The return of live events and performances, as well as larger private indoor gatherings, is coming as health officials warn of the possibility of another surge, but offering residents a touch of normalcy after more than a year of fluctuating restrictions. More than 58,000 people have died from the virus in California, and cases caused by new variants of the virus have increased in several states.

Gavin Newsom’s administration believes reopening is safe given the low case rates and the increasing pace of vaccination. The California workers dosed nearly 20 million doses on Monday.

The guidelines passed by the California Department of Health allow more paying viewers indoors if they show a vaccination certificate or a recent negative COVID-19 test. State officials will also only allow vaccinated areas where people do not have to maintain social distance, but instead have to wear masks.