Toronto Raptors

Toronto Raptors to host full capacity crowd at Scotiabank Arena during 2021-22 season

When the Toronto Raptors open the 2021-22 NBA season on Oct. 20 against the Washington Wizards at Scotiabank Arena, they'll be doing so in front of a capacity crowd.

On Friday, Oct. 8, Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment (MLSE) released a statement announcing that, in conjunction with Provincial health authorities, it has been decided that the Raptors and Maple Leafs will be able to play in front of a full crowd this season.

Within the release, President and CEO of MLSE Michael Friisdahl said that "throughout the process of re-opening our venues to fans, which included working closely with the Province over many months, health and safety has been our shared top priority and we are overjoyed to see this day arrive when we are able to welcome a full venue to cheer on the Maple Leafs and Raptors."

In the Raptors' preseason opener on Oct. 4, the venue operated at half capacity.

MORE: Health and safety protocols to enter MLSE venues

The Raptors last played a regular-season game in Toronto on Feb. 28, 2020, doing so in front of a capacity crowd of 19,800. Nearly 20 months later, the Scotiabank Arena crowd will reach a similar figure as the team returns after a year spent in its temporary home of Tampa, Fla.

Thanks in large part to their fans, the Raptors have one of the best home-court advantages in the NBA. Dating back to the 2017-18 season, Toronto has posted a record of 89-25 (.781) in games played at Scotiabank Arena, including a 23-9 record over 32 home games during the 2019-20 campaign. For perspective, the Raptors finished with a 16-20 record (.444) in 36 games played at Tampa's Amalie Arena during the 2020-21 season.

In addition to opening night against Washington, Toronto will play five of its first six games of the 2021-22 season at Scotiabank Arena, with meetings against the Dallas Mavericks, Chicago Bulls, Indiana Pacers and Orlando Magic on tap.

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