Utah Jazz arena will be named Delta Center once again
The Utah Jazz and Delta Air Lines announced a naming rights agreement and sponsorship deal Saturday to revert Vivint Arena back to the Delta Center.
- The new name will take effect on July 1, before the team's 50th season.
- The terms of the deal were not made public.
Flashback: The arena was named the Delta Center from its opening in 1991 until 2006.
- Delta chose not to renew the naming rights agreement after filing for bankruptcy in 2005. Instead, Energy Solutions, a nuclear waste disposal company, bought the naming rights in 2006.
- In 2015, Vivint entered into a 10-year naming rights agreement with the arena.
Of note: Vivint will maintain the rights to its courtside suite and current ticket packages in a new agreement it announced with the Utah Jazz. It will last through 2030.
Why it matters: Renaming the basketball arena to the Delta Center reminds some Utah Jazz fans of the team's glory run in the 1990s.
- During a Saturday news conference, Utah Jazz owner Ryan Smith told reporters a man had approached him at a gas station that morning after hearing the news.
- "A grown man came up to me in tears because the memories came back," he said.
- "For some of us, it’s always been the Delta Center and as of today, it’s officially BACK!!!" Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall said in a tweet. "Delta Airlines is a tremendous partner to #SLC and I am so happy to welcome back the Delta Center to our capital city."
The big picture: The partnership also signals the airline's increasing footprint in Salt Lake City.
- Delta Air Lines and Salt Lake City Airport recently finalized a multi-year contract to make SLC the airline's West Coast hub through 2044.
- About 5,000 Delta employees live and work in Utah.
What they're saying: Delta Air Lines CEO Ed Bastian told reporters the Utah Jazz were the first NBA franchise the airline sponsored.
- The decision to not extend naming rights agreements in 2006 amid the airline's financial turmoil haunted him for years.
- "It's a real honor to be back," he said.
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