SALT LAKE CITY — As the Utah Jazz head into Game 1 of their second-round series against the Los Angeles Clippers, downtown Salt Lake City bars and restaurants prepared for a very busy night.
The Green Pig Pub just wrapped up a big weekend with the SLC Pride Festival, and suddenly, owners and staff anticipated another packed house Tuesday — this time with rabid Jazz fans.
"I know that we're going to be very busy tonight. If you're a sports bar and you've got a TV, you're gonna be busy," said Bridget Gordon, owner of the Green Pig.
She banked on Jazz fans to turn out and make some noise.
"Vivint is now at full capacity, so there will be a lot of people downtown. We're going to be the loudest crowd they've ever experienced," said Gordon.
With the Jazz playing in the bubble during the pandemic, fans missed out on last year's playoff run.
"I understand the players, they (didn't) have that crowd to get that energy going and being enthusiastic with your game," said Gordon.
Gordon said it was a big boost for establishments that have been struggling to stay open.
"It was pretty slow around here," she said. "Since vaccines came out, business has picked up a lot."
Loyal customers are back as long as the Jazz keep winning.
"You want the Jazz to win the first four games because you just want to kill them and be done with it, but I'm like, win this game seven," Gordon said.
Gordon said every event that brings people into Green Pig is a big deal after being cooped up for over a year.