Utah Jazz Return To Vivint Arena For First Time Since March

Dec 12, 2020, 9:46 PM | Updated: Dec 13, 2020, 9:51 am

SALT LAKE CITY, UtahThe Utah Jazz took on the Phoenix Suns in a preseason game, the team’s first game at Vivint Smart Home Arena since the start of the pandemic, and were victorious.

“It’s truly great to be back in Vivint Arena,” said Frank Zang, spokesperson for the Utah Jazz. “We look forward to the season getting started again.”

Saturday’s home game was not quite the experience you might remember, but it was just what you would expect during the pandemic.

“We are very mindful of health and safety protocols as we bring people back,” Zang said. “It’s still basketball and that’s the best part of it.”

The last time the team played at home was March 11. A memorable moment played out on the court that day against the Oklahoma City Thunder, when the game was called off minutes before tip-off and fans were asked to leave because Rudy Gobert had tested positive for COVID-19.

The remainder of the NBA season was played months later in Orlando.

“It’s been a quick turnaround from the end of last season, which really wasn’t until September, until bringing everybody back here in November,” said Zang.

Ahead of Saturday’s game, players warmed up on the court, while all around them the arena was set up differently — stands were pushed back, front row seats were covered and plexi glass separated other seats from the court.

“It’s great to hear the dribble of the basketball on the court again,” Zang said.

Officials said no tickets will be sold for the team’s two preseason games at home.

At Saturday’s game, only Jazz employees and family members were welcome. They were seated in small groups spread out across the stands.

On December 26, the Utah Jazz will welcome 1,500 fans to Vivint Arena for their first regular season home game. That is less than 10% of the arena’s 18,306 seats.

“Even though we’re so limited in terms of the number of people that will be able to come and watch games in person, we’re super happy to be back playing basketball again,” Zang said. “Jazz basketball is a unifier, it’s something everybody likes to get behind.”

The tickets, the concessions, the seating arrangement will all look a bit different this season, but the game itself is just how fans remember it.

“If this provides a small measure of happiness, that’s mission accomplished,” said Zang. “It’s a small step. It’s a preseason game, but the lights are on in the arena again, the players are back on the court and we are hopeful for what the future may bring.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

KSL Sports

Jose Altuve #27, Alex Bregman #2, Justin Verlander #35, Yuli Gurriel #10 and Lance McCullers Jr. #4...
Associated Press

Fans celebrate Houston Astros’ World Series win with parade

An estimated crowd of more than 1 million fans celebrated the Houston Astros' World Series win with a downtown parade Monday.
28 days ago
(Sean Moody/KSL TV)...

#TakeNote returns to Jazz Twitter after Apple promotion takes over hashtag

Looks like the Utah Jazz will get to keep their hashtag.
2 months ago
Utah Jazz coach Will Hardy (left) speaks with KSL's Deanie Wimmer (right) ahead of the team's first...
Deanie Wimmer and Madison Swenson, KSL TV

KSL’s Deanie Wimmer sits down with new coach of Utah Jazz

The Utah Jazz play their first home game of a new season this week with a mostly new team and a new head coach. KSL's Deanie Wimmer sat down with him for a one-on-one interview.
2 months ago
(KSL TV)...

Police report: No evidence that fan banned by BYU used a racial slur

A BYU police officer said he reviewed video surveillance of the volleyball game against BYU and Duke University and does not see evidence that the fan who was banned by BYU that night was the person making the derogatory comments, according to a police report obtained by KSL TV.
3 months ago
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 22: A sign designating a Vaccinated Fan Section is see before the game bet...
TIM REYNOLDS, AP Basketball Writer

Unvaccinated NBA players, staff must test weekly for COVID

Unvaccinated NBA players and team personnel must submit to weekly COVID-19 testing this season.
3 months ago
Andrew Adams, KSL TV

Fans, writers weigh in on Jazz future after early playoff exit

The morning after the Utah Jazz got bounced from the playoffs was not a pretty one. Fans and NBA writers alike offered their takes on the future of the franchise, with many pointing to tough choices and the potential for significant offseason changes.
7 months ago

Sponsored Articles

house with for rent sign posted...
Chase Harrington, president and COO of Entrata

Top 5 reasons you may want to consider apartment life over owning a home

There are many benefits of renting that can be overshadowed by the allure of buying a home. Here are five reasons why renting might be right for you.
Festive kitchen in Christmas decorations. Christmas dining room....
Lighting Design

6 Holiday Decor Trends to Try in 2022

We've rounded out the top 6 holiday decor trends for 2022 so you can be ahead of the game before you start shopping. 
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Take this quiz before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Diverse Group of Energetic Professionals Team Meeting in Modern Office: Brainstorming IT Programmer...
Les Olson

Don’t let a ransomware attack get you down | Protect your workplace today with cyber insurance

Business owners and operators should be on guard to protect their workplace. Cyber insurance can protect you from online attacks.
Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Portrait of smiling practitioner with multi-ethnic senior people...
Summit Vista

How retirement communities help with healthy aging

There are many benefits that retirement communities contribute to healthy aging. Learn more about how it can enhance your life, or the life of your loved ones.
Utah Jazz Return To Vivint Arena For First Time Since March