PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - The NBA's COVID-19 protocols are strict so they're approving only certain restaurants where teams can go eat.
Next Wednesday, the Atlanta Hawks visit Phoenix to play the Suns. When they're in town, options will be limited as to where they can eat. We're talking only five restaurants in the Valley, according to ESPN. One of them showed their playbook on how they landed this honor.
"The best precaution is the right attitude and approach," said Steak 44's chief brand officer Oliver Badgio.
He said they have a strong defense against COVID-19.
"Following all CDC and state guidelines," said Badgio. "As well as additional things like you can see in the restaurant, the flowers on alternating tables, really clearly indicating that those tables aren't being used."
And the gameplan has been scouted by the NBA. Badgio said the league contacted him a month ago to fill out paperwork and list their precautions and just last week, he found out they were picked to be one of the five Phoenix restaurants approved for visiting NBA teams. According to ESPN, restaurants were picked based on outdoor seating or private dining rooms.
"It is a great accomplishment and one we don't take for granted," said Badgio.
So next time you see the Suns tip-off, there's a good chance the competition will end up eating here.
"That's pretty exciting," said Badgio.
According to ESPN, the other four restaurants are Tomaso's on Camelback, Chantico Mexican Restaurant, North Italia and True Food Kitchen.