Vivint Arena transforms for NBA All-Star event

Feb 15, 2023, 6:01 PM | Updated: 6:24 pm

SALT LAKE CITY — There is so much going on inside Vivint Arena that it can be tough to keep up with it all.

“It is a little bit challenging. It is definitely a show,” said Carlton Myers, NBA’s senior vice president of live production and entertainment.

Myers knows about everything happening and can tell anyone that he loves every second of the organized chaos, especially when it comes to the stage just behind one of the baskets.

“We have lighting that comes in from the top. A garage door that opens up. The three panels you see on the side that spin and they have lights on them,” he said with an excited smile.

It is the extra stuff in the arena beyond the actual game, and this weekend’s All-Star Game events will be quite a show.

“The show around the game is what All-Star is all about,” Myers said. “It’s what differentiates it from any other basketball game, right?”

A lot of rehearsals were happening on Wednesday to prepare for the events. There were also a lot of All-Star branded logos, cameras, and double rows of announcer tables.

The NBA All-Star Game has truly become a bigger event than when Salt Lake last had the Game in 1993. Even still, trying to keep things local was important to Jazz ownership.

The shorts players will be wearing feature five stars representing Utah’s five National Parks. The basketballs used in the 3-point contest have Delicate Arch and a starry nighttime sky printed on them.

“It’s special for Utah. We worked with Wilson on this design,” said Hallie Keselman, who is on the NBA’s equipment team.

Seeing what’s already been happening, not just with the arena but with hotels, restaurants, and businesses, NBA executives say they’re impressed.

“This is a city that is big event ready,” said Joey Graziano, who is the NBA Senior Vice President of Global Business Operations. “This is a city that, certainly, from hosting an Olympics but is now thinking about future events. I think what people don’t realize is how big event ready this city is.”

Myers is now a believer. Even though it is his 27th year with the NBA, it’s his first time visiting Salt Lake.

“It’s a beautiful city. Set amongst the mountains,” Myers said.

So, we had to check if he knew who the two most popular Jazz players in history are.

“Do I have to say it?” he said with a laugh. “Stockton and Malone, of course. Stockton and Malone.”

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Vivint Arena transforms for NBA All-Star event