The Note: The history of the Utah Jazz's Purple Mountains

by Aaron Falk

After two trips to the NBA Finals, a pair of MVP awards for Karl Malone, and two decades of perspective, the Utah Jazz’s mountain logo now represents some of the most significant moments in franchise history. But it wasn’t always beloved. When team owner Larry H. Miller asked the Hall of Famers in the mid-’90s about changing the team’s logo, the Utah Jazz’s biggest stars weren’t fans of the idea.

“I said, Nope,” Hall of Fame point guard John Stockton recalled later. “I know my opinion. I didn’t want to change anything. The Yankees don’t’ change logos. That was my attitude. So why do the Jazz have to change theirs? Anyway, he took my advice and put it where it mattered, I guess.”

Years later, Jazz fans everywhere have fond feelings for the purple, teal and copper look the team unveiled in 1996.

Jazz art director Ben Barnes and Jay Francis, the LHM executive who led the Jazz’s marketing department at the time of the logo change, join The Note podcast this week to discuss the history of the iconic logo, and share their thoughts on bringing back the purple mountains this season.

To find past episodes and subscribe to The Note podcast through your favorite service, click here.


  • Facebook
  • Twitter