Jazz’s Markkanen, Clarkson, Hardy Attend Utah NHL Party

Apr 24, 2024, 8:01 PM

Fans at the Delta Center attend the welcome party for NHL in Utah...

Fans at the Delta Center attend the welcome party for NHL in Utah (Credit: Scott G Winterton, Deseret News)

(Credit: Scott G Winterton, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY – Utah Jazz forward Lauri Markkanen, guard Jordan Clarkson, and head coach Will Hardy were in attendance for the NHL in Utah party at Delta Center.

The party was held on Wednesday to introduce members of the recently acquired hockey team to fans in Utah for the first time.

The Jazz and the NHL team will share the Delta Center as their home arena in Salt Lake City.

Related: How Does NHL Affect Jazz, Delta Center?

Markkanen, Clarkson, Hardy Welcome NHL To Utah

The three familiar Jazz faces were in attendance alongside a sold-out crowd at Delta Center.

Markkanen, Clarkson, and Hardy sat near the main stage where hockey general manager Bill Armstrong, coach André Tourigny, and more than a dozen members of the roster were introduced to a ruckus fanbase in Utah.

Defender Juuso Valimaki wasted little time developing a bond with Markkanen, a fellow Finland native.

After Valikami identified Tampere as his hometown during his player introduction, Markkanen stood up to encourage more celebration from the crowd.

Related: Markkanen, Hardy Discussing Sharing Arena With NHL Team

Valimaki isn’t the only Finnish player moving to Utah with the hockey club.

Forward Matias Maccelli was born in Turku, Finland, and posed for a photo at Markkanen’s locker when the hockey team was given a tour of the arena early Wednesday.

Related: Trademarks Issued For Potential Utah NHL Team Name

Tampere, Turku, and Markkanen’s native Vantaa are all located within 110 miles of each other on the southern coast of Finland.

The hockey team will begin its preseason in September while the Jazz will open camp in October.

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Ben Anderson is the Utah Jazz insider for KSL Sports and the co-host of Jake and Ben from 10-12p with Jake Scott on 97.5 The KSL Sports Zone. Find Ben on Twitter at @BensHoops or on Instagram @BensHoops.

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Jazz’s Markkanen, Clarkson, Hardy Attend Utah NHL Party