Nick Carter is still front and center with the Backstreet Boys, and based on their live performance Friday night … fans are backing him after a woman sued him for sexual battery.
BSB took the stage at MSG for Jingle Ball — singing the Wham! classic, “Last Christmas” — and the crowd went wild, particularly when Nick solo’d on the first verse. It was the group’s first performance since Nick was accused of the 2001 assault.
TMZ broke the story … Shannon Ruth, who is autistic and has cerebral palsy, filed suit Thursday, claiming Carter forced her to perform a sexual act on him while on his tour bus. She was 17 at the time.
Nick denies the alleged incident ever happened, but as we reported … ABC canceled a Backstreet Boys primetime holiday special that was set to air this coming week.
Several Nick Carter hashtags, including #IStandWithNickCarter, were trending Friday, in response to ABC’s move and the lawsuit.
Other performers Friday night included Dua Lipa, Lizzo and The Kid LAROI.
The all-star lineup drew plenty of NYC celebs in the audience too … such as Bethenny Frankel.
A good night for all … but especially Nick.