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           — BRIGHAM YOUNG”                             

Utah sports history will be made in the valley on Friday night

History will be made Friday in the Salt Lake Valley. For the first time, the Utah Jazz, Utah Grizzlies, Real Salt Lake and the Salt Lake Bees all have home games scheduled for the same night.

The action begins at Smith’s Ballpark, where the Bees and Reno Aces square off at 6:35 p.m. The Jazz meet the Denver Nuggets 25 minutes later at Vivint Arena. Then come the others. The Grizzlies take on the Rapid City Rush at the Maverik Center at 7:10 p.m., with Real Salt Lake facing the San Jose Earthquakes at Rio Tinto Stadium at 7:30 p.m.

All the events will be played with limited attendance and social distancing protocols because of the pandemic.

“I think it’s a real positive step forward. I’m not sure the pandemic is behind us yet, but I think we’re moving forward,” said Bees vice-president/general manager Marc Amicone. “We don’t know who’s going to attend or how many are going to attend until it’s over, but I think the fact that we’re having four events the same night and concerts are opening up and stuff I think that’s an extremely positive sign that we’re heading back into the right direction.”

Amicone added that things may be moving to a more “new normal” — if that makes sense, he said — in light of the fact that things are still different than usual. 

Changes, such as a full pro sports slate on the same night, are coming to the valley as well. The population surge is making it a reality.

“I think we’ve grown enough to do that,” Amicone said. “Who knows what the attendance will be. I don’t know if we would sell out at full capacity with four events, but I think each sport has enough of its own fans that we’re in pretty good shape that way.”

Add in the colleges, Amicone continued, and it’s even more positive that multiple sports are going on locally at the same time.

“That means we have more sports fans and I think we help each other with that scenario,” he said.

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