The Tampa Bay Lightning will no longer enforce a policy that restricts fans from wearing opposing teams’ gear in certain seating areas at Amalie Arena, a source confirmed to The Athletic on Friday. ESPN first reported the news.
The policy drew attention after a video emerged showing arena employees telling a man and his son that they could not wear a Florida Panthers jersey at their seats, which were in the second row behind the glass. The employees offered to relocate the fans if they continued wearing Panthers gear or to wear another non-logo shirt. One of the employees told the man they would involve the Tampa Police Department if necessary.
Started in 2015 at the request of premium ticket holders, the policy applies to the first three rows of seating behind the glass around the ice and the Chase Club area on the south side of the arena.
The Lightning beat the Panthers in six games during their first-round series. They will face top-seeded Carolina in the second round, with Game 1 set for Sunday in Raleigh, N.C.