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FIBA Europe Board pushes ahead with attractive club competitions model
MUNICH - A number of issues were discussed during the extraordinary session of the FIBA Europe Board in Budapest, Hungary on Sunday.
The Board discussed the ongoing project of remodelling the European club competitions, receiving presentations from the two working groups that were tasked by FIBA and FIBA Europe to prepare proposals for the top and the second European Club Competition.
Regarding the top club competition, the Board concluded that FIBA - who had already approved the model at its last Executive Committee meeting - and FIBA Europe are ready to launch a top club competition with outstanding growth potential. It noted in particular the strong financial support secured by the working group for the sustainability of the new league in the long term and decided to invest FIBA Europe's own resources alongside those of FIBA into the project. The Board agreed for the Working Group to present the proposal to the clubs and to other stakeholders in order to improve it and launch it as soon as possible.
On the matter of the second European club competition the Board approved the launch of the competition as follows:
- A new second level competition will involve all the clubs not participating in the top club competition. This competition will start in the 2015-16 season.
- Up to 100 clubs from over 40 countries are to be involved in the different stages of the competition.
- Following the qualification rounds, the first group phase will involve 64 clubs (Round of 64) with 16 round-robin groups of four (4) teams each. The two top ranked teams will progress to the Round of 32.
- The next group phase (Round of 32) will feature eight (8) round-robin groups of four (4) teams each. The two top ranked teams will progress to the playoffs.
- The two play-off rounds will involve 16 and 8 teams respectively. The season will conclude with a Final Four.
- Spots will be allocated based on sporting results of clubs in their national leagues and European club competitions. A number of spots will be covered by the teams that did not qualify for the top competition through the top competition’s Qualification Round and through the Qualification Round of the second level competition.
- FIBA Europe will initially invest a substantial amount of financial resources into the competition. The main goal is to reduce the participating costs for all the clubs in this competition and to guarantee performance bonuses for teams progressing to the next stages of the competition and after every stage.
- All National Member Federations are committed to register their teams to this competition and to work with their leagues (where needed) to achieve this.
OFFICIALLY RECOGNISED COMPETITIONS
The Board was informed that three regional leagues have retained their status as officially recognised competitions.
The Baltic Basketball League (BBL), the Baltic Women’s Basketball League (BWBL) and the Central European Women’s League (CEWL) have all submitted the necessary declarations before the given deadlines.
The new Adriatic League (ABA) eventually submitted the requested documentation to FIBA, including a standard declaration and amended statutes on the basis of FIBA and FIBA Europe's previous comments. The new league will now proceed with official registration as a legal entity under Croatian law with a legal seat in Zagreb.
Following the aforementioned developments, the FIBA Europe Board expressed its satisfaction at the efforts made by the National Member Federations and the clubs in the area and provisionally recognises the new Adriatic Basketball League, subject to completing its legal registration.
The Board will inform the Union of European Leagues of Basketball (ULEB) about this development and invite it to take actions accordingly in its upcoming General Assembly.
Furthermore, the Board invited ULEB to propose a short list of four candidates for the co-optation of two league representatives to the FIBA Europe Board and a short list of six candidates for the participation in FIBA’s newly established FIBA Permanent Working Group on Club matters. The exact number of participants will be determined at the next meeting of the FIBA Central Board in August.
The Board heard that FIBA and FIBA Europe have received requests to clarify the issue of player insurance for players participating in national team competitions. As decided by FIBA's Executive Committee, the Working Group on League matters will review the internal regulations.