Jan 17, 2023 - News

Utah Jazz arena will be named Delta Center once again

Image courtesy of the Utah Jazz.

The Delta Center. Photo: Courtesy of the Utah Jazz

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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