Jazz Owner Ryan Smith Believes Utah Could Support Another Pro Sports Team

Oct 19, 2022, 11:30 AM

NHL and MLB logos side by side...

NHL & MLB logos (Photo: Getty Images)

(Photo: Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY – Utah Jazz and Real Salt Lake owner Ryan Smith spoke candidly about the potential of another pro sports franchise in Utah.

As of late, it appears Smith, who started Smith Entertainment Group (SEG), is all in on the sports business. Shortly after purchasing the Utah Jazz, he was part of a group that bought Utah’s MLS club, Real Salt Lake.

“When we started SEG we made the decision that we were going into sports and if we are going in, we are going in,” Smith told DJ and PK during an exclusive interview on KSL Sports Zone.

He talked about the partnership with David Blitzer, who is the other part owner of Real Salt Lake. Blitzer’s group also owns part of the Sixers, New Jersey Devils and Cleveland Guardians.

“We just brought in Arctos and this is … what they do. They own pieces of about five or six teams in every league,” Smith gave a peek behind the curtain, “They are in every conversation in sports.”

Can Utah/Salt Lake City Support Another Pro Sports Team? Ask Ryan Smith.

“The one thing I am 100% convinced of is that we can support it in this market, especially if you look at the growth and where it is going,” he said during the interview.

Smith didn’t provide specifics on what sport could come to Utah. Could it be hockey? Maybe, the NHL fanbase in Utah seems strong. Year after year fans pack Vivint Arena for the Frozen Fury, a preseason hockey game put on by the Los Angeles Kings. Just a few weeks ago the Las Vegas Knights beat the Kings in Salt Lake City in front of a large crowd, where jerseys from more than 20 different NHL teams were spotted.

Or, could it be Major League Baseball? Utahns prove year after year that they love evenings at the ballpark in support of MiLB’s Salt Lake Bees, the TripleA affiliate of the Los Angeles Angels.

“What type of sport is really going to depend on timing and availability. This is a multi-year process,” Smith explained. “For example, if someone wanted a new NBA team right now, no matter how great the market is … it is not overnight. No one knows when that is actually coming.”

Smith explained the options for leagues, which are either relocation or expansion. He confirmed that conversations have been had about the future of another pro sports team in Utah.

“We’re opportunistic and we’re super ready,” Smith gave hope to sports fans in Utah who are rooting for another professional team.

Smith’s goal of creating an “entertainment district” around the Jazz and Real Salt Lake is already beginning to take off with improvements to Vivint Arena, another professional team would add to what Smith Entertainment Group is trying to build.

“This could provide something super powerful and something I think the state needs and definitely could support,” Smith said. “It would be really cool to be a part of that.”

Now the question is, what pro league do you want to see make a home in Utah?

Listen to full interview with Utah Jazz owner Ryan Smith on DJ & PK below.

  • Utah Jazz Scoreboard

  • Utah Jazz Team Leaders

  • Utah Jazz Standings

Professional Sports

Tony Finau 2024 PGA Championship Round Three...

Chandler Holt

Tony Finau Holds Ground In Third Round At PGA Championship

Tony Finau held on to his top ten spot with a respectable performance in the third round of the 2024 PGA Championship.

16 hours ago


Chandler Holt

Real Salt Lake Stuns Colorado Rapids With Late Push

Real Salt Lake looked dead in the water at multiple points in the match against the Colorado Rapids but still came out on top.

18 hours ago

Andres Gomez RSL Real Salt Lake Seattle Sounders Colorado Rapids...

Chandler Holt

Real Salt Lake Takes Late Lead Over Colorado With Two Quick Goals

RSL spent nearly 30 minutes looking for an equalizer against the Colorado Rapids. They ended up getting more than what they asked for.

18 hours ago

Andres Gomez Real Salt Lake RSL Seattle Sounders...

Chandler Holt

Andres Gomez Finds First-Half Equalizer Against Colorado Rapids

Andres Gomez scored one of the better goals of the season so far for Real Salt Lake to even the score with the Colorado Rapids.

19 hours ago

Chicho Arango Real Salt Lake RSL Seattle Sounders...

Chandler Holt

Chicho Arango Gives RSL Hope After Rough Start Against Colorado

RSL got out to a slow start against Colorado but a goal from Chicho Arango put some wind in the sails of the home side.

19 hours ago


Brian Preece

Late Try Gives Utah Warriors Single Point In Loss To NOLA Gold

NOLA Gold put together an impressive defensive performance to hold of the comeback-minded Utah Warriors in Major League Rugby action. 

20 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Follow @kslsports...

KSL Give-A-Thon

The KSL Sports Zone, KSL 5 TV, FM100.3, 103.5 The Arrow, and KSL NewsRadio have teamed up to raise money for the kids being served by Primary Children’s Care!


KSL Sports

KSL Sports Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the KSL Sports newsletter. Get the latest Utah sports news delivered to your inbox.


KSL Sports

Jazz Notes Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the Jazz Notes newsletter. Get insider analysis, game recaps and opportunities to win tickets!

Follow @kslsports...

The Road Home Mediathon 2023

The KSL Sports Zone and are proud to support the all-day Mediathon 2023 at the Road Home, an annual tradition to raise money and other essential items for the Road Home, a Homeless Shelter.

3 kids wearing real salt lake jerseys smiling...

Real Salt Lake

6 Reasons You Need to Experience a RSL Matchday

RSL Games are a great way to spend time with your family with fun activities, good food, and traditions you can only experience at the field.

High angle view of the beautiful Rose Bowl Stadium...

KSL Digital Sales

How to Prepare for the 2023 Rose Bowl

Everything you need to know to plan your 2023 Rose Bowl trip in Pasadena, California. This year, the Utes will face Penn State.

Jazz Owner Ryan Smith Believes Utah Could Support Another Pro Sports Team