Utah Jazz owner Ryan Smith stopped by “The Pat McAfee Show” Wednesday ahead of his team’s game in Indianapolis against the Indiana Pacers.
Host Pat McAfee, who recently took in a Jazz game in Salt Lake City while he was in town with ESPN’s “College GameDay,” repeatedly praised Smith during the segment as he questioned him about NBA ownership and his love for the Beehive State.
“You’re super cool, dude,” McAfee said.
Smith’s appearance on “The Pat McAfee Show” included cameos from NFL legend JJ Watt and BYU alum and current Baltimore Ravens linebacker Kyle Van Noy.
Watt, like McAfee, had only kind words for Smith.
“Ryan is a very good athlete. It’s pretty impressive. Very good golfer. Very good pickleball player. Obviously good at basketball ... He’s a sneaky, sneaky good athlete,” Watt said.
During his appearance, Smith pushed back against the BYU-related sexual references that were part of McAfee’s Friday, Oct. 27, show in Salt Lake City. Smith implied McAfee and his team were being gullible, while Van Noy said McAfee was purposely trying to stir up trouble.
Later in the show, Smith had a chance to prove his basketball prowess when McAfee challenged him to shoot five 3-pointers. If he could make two, McAfee promised to donate $40,000 to 5 for the Fight, a crowdfunding nonprofit that helps cancer patients.
Smith made his first two shots but missed the next two. As he prepared for his fifth 3-pointer, McAfee said he’d donate an extra $10,000 if Smith made the basket. He did.
“Guys, an owner who can drain 3s,” McAfee said as he wrapped up the Smith interview.
Here’s a look at some of the comments Smith made during his time on “The Pat McAfee Show.”
On the Jazz’s rocky start to the season
“We’re figuring it out. It’s early. ... We’ve got some new pieces and we’re trying to figure out how to gel. We’ve got a ways to go,” Smith said.
On working with Danny Ainge
“He’s someone that I always gelled with. ... First and foremost, we’re friends and we like to hang out together,” Smith said.
On Utah Jazz fans
“Our fans are incredible. Utah fans are absolutely incredible. ... The Jazz are really the pinnacle that brings everyone together in Utah,” Smith said.
On working with Dwyane Wade
“He’s one of one, man. ... Phenomenal businessman. Great partner. Understands teamwork,” Smith said. “Anytime you can get Dwyane Wade on your team, you do it.”
On trying to bring an NHL franchise to Utah
“At Smith Entertainment Group, we’re open to all of it. We want to be part of everything Utah. A lot of people I know in my spot want to be part of the Premier League or something somewhere else. I am all about Utah. I want to do sports, but I want to do it in Utah because I believe in what’s happening there and where this is going. You’re all going to remember this conversation (in 10 years) and think ... ‘Holy Cow. Look at what’s happened there,’” Smith said.