Coronavirus Impacts XFL Attendance

The XFL is the latest sports entity to be majorly impacted by the coronavirus. This weekend’s game featuring the Seattle Dragons and Houston Roughnecks will be played as scheduled, with one exception. No fans will be in attendance. Due to public safety concerns, governor Jay Inslee has declared a ban on all social gatherings of over 250 people. The ban includes all pre-game tailgate activities. The game will go on as scheduled, but Seattle and Houston will play in front of an empty stadium on Sunday evening. The fan-ban is a significant turn of events for Seattle and its fans, as the Dragons are averaging the second-highest attendance numbers in the XFL. The Dragons play back to back home games over the next two weeks. CenturyLink Field, home of the Dragons, released this statement:

The XFL released this statement today:

On a positive note, the Seattle Dragons released a statement as well, offering single-game ticket refunds to fans. 

One of the most interesting details inside the refund memo was the option for fans to apply the refund to a credit for the 2021 season. This is a positive sign, as it implies the XFL is planning on a season two. The confidence the XFL has in its product is high.

Other XFL host cities, such as DC and New York, are in the process of making similar decisions, though those decisions have not yet to be finalized. Both the Defenders and Guardians have home games in week six. Houston has also canceled all city-related events, leading to speculation that the next Roughnecks home game will be played in front of an empty stadium as well. Houston returns home in week seven. In a statement from Roughnecks Team president Brian Michael Cooper had this to say, “As of now, our next game will take place as planned. We understand this situation is evolving, and the league is monitoring all developments daily.”

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