Euroleague Basketball seeks consensus

Sep 23, 2008 by Print
At the Euroleague Basketball Assembly held in Berlin on July 7, 2008, a wide majority of European clubs and leagues supported the new structural project of Euroleague Basketball.

In Berlin, it should be remembered, 25 of the 33 members of the Assembly voted in favour of the project and five others asked to postpone their decisions until further information was available.

At that very moment, Euroleague Basketball expressed its willingness to keep working towards a wider consensus, with the intention of eventually achieving unanimous support within European basketball for the project.

As Euroleague Basketball CEO Jordi Bertomeu states: "Since the Assembly in Berlin ended, we have worked towards reaching a consensus with all members while respecting the majority┬┤ s choice and, at the same time, towards remaining open to any recommendations that could improve the system." As an example of that openness, Bertomeu continues; "The possibility of playing preliminary phases that would make the system even more fluid and open, as has been suggested, seems very interesting to us."

The proposal presented at the Assembly in Berlin calls for a two-step implementation process, with the new competition system to start with the upcoming 2008-09 season and the new team license system to debut for the 2009-10 season. More than 75% of the club and league representatives showed themselves to be in favour of this proposal. "The new license distribution system seeks to reinforce three of the key pillars that have permitted European basketball to develop at a national level" Bertomeu explains.

"First, to achieve better stability for the clubs through a system of promotion and demotion similar to that of the national leagues; second, to allow a greater number of clubs and countries the possibility of accessing Euroleague Basketball thanks to the aforementioned promotion and demotion system; and third, to increase the sense of belonging to Euroleague Basketball on the part of both clubs and leagues, given that now, to keep playing in the Euroleague will depend on results obtained in the same competition."

The objective of the A licenses is to strengthen clubs with stable projects like, for example, Maccabi Electra Tel Aviv, Regal FC Barcelona, Real Madrid, Tau Ceramica, CSKA Moscow, Olympiacos Piraeus, Panathinaikos Athens, Montepaschi Siena.

The objective of the B licenses is to reinforce the projects of national leagues like the ACB (Spain), Lega Basket (Italy), HEBA (Greece) and so on.

Bertomeu concludes by highlighting the following: "We will continue working towards developing this project that has been entrusted to us by the Euroleague Basketball Assembly, and we are confident that through dialogue we will be able to reach the desired consensus."