Emotional Gail Miller discusses the transition of the Utah Jazz ownership


SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC4 News) – An emotional Gail Miller spoke eloquently at the start of a formal press conference discussing the transition of the Utah Jazz from the Miller family to the Smiths.

Ryan Smith, founder of Provo base Qualtrics, and his wife Ashley said they felt honored to be able to take this journey and are grateful to the Miller family for trusting them.

And in one fell swoop, Smith put fans’ fears at ease by sharing that he and his wife are committed to the Millers’ vision – to the Jazz and Utah.

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Gail Miller then handed the very same basketball they were given 35 years ago when she and Larry Miller took ownership of the Jazz. She also handed Ryan the key to the Jazz kingdom.

“Since you are going to be the key decision-maker, I thought you needed a key,” said Gail Miller. “So I am giving you the key to the kingdom and hope with the advice I have written here you will have a steady course.”

Gail Miller said their family will maintain a minority interest in the Jazz and the transaction is still subject to the approval of the NBA Board of Governors.

“Selling the Utah Jazz was a huge decision, but doing so becomes a catalyst for our family and businesses to continue to evolve and enrich lives while also allowing Ashley and Ryan to begin their journey,” Gail Miller said. “Our family looks forward to the adventures Ryan and Ashley will create on this journey and we wish them the very best. Again, I want to thank my family who has been very supportive and unified, the players, the coaches, and staff, our employees, and our partners, and especially our fans.”

Miller continued to express her gratitude to Steve Starks and their management team for all their hard work and long hours spent working on this transition as well as her husband Kim for his patience and support.

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“I also want to thank Larry for making this absolutely remarkable journey possible,” Gail Miller said. “We love all of you, and we care about all of you, and we appreciate your support all these years.”

The Millers were unable to discuss the details of the change in ownership until the NBA Board of Governors approves the pending transacation.

ABC4 will continue to follow this story, player and fans reactions and details of the transwer of ownership througout the day. Check our website ABC4.com for more information as it become available.

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