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The meaning of «utah jazz»

The Utah Jazz are an American professional basketball team based in Salt Lake City. The Jazz compete in the National Basketball Association (NBA) as a member of the league's Western Conference, Northwest Division. Since 1991, the team has played its home games at Vivint Arena. The franchise began play as an expansion team in 1974 as the New Orleans Jazz (as a tribute to New Orleans' history of originating jazz music). The Jazz moved to Salt Lake City in 1979.

The Jazz were one of the least successful teams in the league in their early years. Although 10 seasons elapsed before the Jazz qualified for their first playoff appearance in 1984, they did not miss the playoffs again until 2004. During the late 1980s, John Stockton and Karl Malone arose as the franchise players for the team, and formed one of the most famed point guard–power forward duos in NBA history. Led by coach Jerry Sloan, who took over from Frank Layden in 1988, they became one of the powerhouse teams of the 1990s, culminating in two NBA Finals appearances in 1997 and 1998, where they lost both times to the Chicago Bulls, led by Michael Jordan.

Both Stockton and Malone moved on in 2003. After missing the playoffs for three consecutive seasons the Jazz returned to prominence under the on-court leadership of point guard Deron Williams. However, partway through the 2010–11 season, the Jazz began restructuring after Sloan's retirement and Williams' trade to the New Jersey Nets. Quin Snyder was hired as head coach in June 2014. With the development of Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell into All-Stars, the Jazz launched themselves back into playoff contention.

On June 7, 1974, the New Orleans Jazz were admitted as an expansion franchise into the National Basketball Association (NBA). Team officials selected the name because of its definition in the dictionary: collective improvisation.[5] The team began its inaugural season in New Orleans in the 1974–75 season. The team's first major move was to trade for star player Pete Maravich (who had played college basketball at LSU) from the Atlanta Hawks for two first-round draft picks, three second-round picks, and one third-round pick over the next three years.[12] Although he was considered one of the most entertaining players in the league and won the scoring championship for the 1976–77 season with 31.1 points per game, the Jazz's best record while in New Orleans was 39–43 in the 1977–78 season. Maravich struggled with knee injuries from that season onward until they ended in 1985.

Venue issues were a continual problem for the team while it was based in New Orleans. In the Jazz's first season, they played in the Municipal Auditorium and Loyola Field House, where the basketball court was raised so high that the NBA Players Association made the team put a net around the court to prevent players from falling off of the court and into the stands.[13] Later, the Jazz played games in the cavernous Louisiana Superdome, but things were no better, because of high demand for the stadium, onerous lease terms, and Maravich's constant knee problems. They also faced the prospect of spending a whole month on the road each year because of New Orleans' Mardi Gras festivities, similar to the long road trip faced by the San Antonio Spurs each season during their city's rodeo.[12][14] Years later, founding owner Sam Battistone claimed that there was no contingency plan in case the Jazz had ever qualified for the playoffs. However, the Superdome's manager at the time, Bill Curl, said that the stadium's management always submitted a list of potential playoff dates to the Jazz management, but these letters were never answered.

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