|Current season or competition:
Official logo of the Turkish Airlines Euroleague
|Motto||I Feel Devotion|
|No. of teams||31 (preliminary stage)
24 (group stage)
|Countries||FIBA Europe member associations|
|Most recent champion(s)||Olympiacos
|Most titles||Real Madrid
|TV partner(s)||Euroleague TV
List of broadcasters
|Level on pyramid||1st tier|
The Turkish Airlines Euroleague, commonly known as the Euroleague, is the highest level tier and most important professional club basketball competition in Europe, with teams from up to 18 different countries, members of FIBA Europe. For sponsorship reasons, for five seasons starting with 2010–11, it is named the Turkish Airlines Euroleague. The competition is controlled by the private company Euroleague Basketball Company, and features clubs that come from a Europe-wide consortium of leading professional basketball leagues, called ULEB. During the season, the Euroleague is broadcast on television in 199 countries and can be seen by up to 245 million (800 million via satellite) households weekly in China. It is also televised in the United States and Canada on NBA TV and available online through ESPN3. The Euroleague Final Four is also broadcast on television in 199 countries.
- 1 History
- 2 Format
- 3 Finals
- 4 Titles
- 5 Euroleague awards
- 6 Records
- 7 Euroleague versus NBA games
- 8 Statistical leaders
- 9 Individual performances
- 10 Media coverage
- 11 Sponsors
- 12 See also
- 13 References
- 14 External links
The Euroleague (or historically called, the European Champions' Cup) was originally established by FIBA and it operated under its umbrella from 1958 until the summer of 2000, concluding with the 1999–00 season. That was when Euroleague Basketball Company was created.
Amazingly, FIBA had never trademarked the "Euroleague" name, even though it had used that name for the competition since 1996. Euroleague Basketball simply appropriated the name, and since FIBA had no legal recourse to do anything about it, it was forced to find a new name for its championship series. Thus, the following 2000–2001 season started with 2 separate top European professional club basketball competitions: the FIBA SuproLeague (previously known as the FIBA Euroleague) and the brand new Euroleague 2000–01 season.
The rift in European professional club basketball initially showed no signs of letting up. Top clubs were also split between the two leagues: Panathinaikos, Maccabi Tel Aviv, CSKA Moscow and Efes Pilsen stayed with FIBA, while Olympiacos, Kinder Bologna, Real Madrid, FC Barcelona, Baskonia and Benetton Treviso joined Euroleague Basketball.
In May 2001, Europe had two continental champions, Maccabi of the FIBA SuproLeague and Kinder Bologna of the Euroleague. The leaders of both organizations realized the need to come up with a unified competition. Although only a year old, Euroleague Basketball negotiated from a position of strength and dictated proceedings. FIBA essentially had no choice but to agree to Euroleague Basketball's terms. As a result, European club competition was fully integrated under Euroleague Basketball's umbrella and teams that competed in the FIBA SuproLeague during the 2000–01 season joined it as well.
In essence, the authority in European professional basketball was divided over club-country lines. FIBA stayed in charge of national team competitions (like the FIBA EuroBasket, the FIBA World Cup, and the Summer Olympics), while Euroleague Basketball took over the European professional club competitions. From that point on, FIBA's Korać Cup and Saporta Cup competitions lasted only one more season before folding, which was when Euroleague Basketball launched the ULEB Cup, now known as the Eurocup.
Names of the competition
- FIBA era: (1958–2001)
- FIBA European Champions Cup: (1958–1991)
- FIBA European League ("FIBA Euro League"): (1991–1996)
- FIBA Euroleague: (1996–2000)
- FIBA SuproLeague: (2000–2001)
- Euroleague Basketball era: (2000–present)
- Euroleague: (2000 – present)
Turkish Airlines name sponsorship
On 26 July 2010, Turkish Airlines and Euroleague Basketball announced a €15 million strategic agreement to sponsor the top European basketball competition across the globe. According to the agreement, starting with the 2010–11 season, the top European competition will be named Turkish Airlines Euroleague Basketball. Similarly, the Euroleague Final Four will be named the Turkish Airlines Euroleague Final Four, whereby the new league title will appear in all media accordingly. This title partnership will run for five seasons, with the option of extending it to an additional five.
Since the 2009–10 season, the Euroleague's first phase has been the Qualifying Rounds, which involve eight clubs bracketed into a knockout tournament consisting of two-legged matches. The four survivors of the First Qualifying Round are paired against one another for the Second Qualifying Round, with the two winners continuing in the Euroleague. All losing clubs in the Qualifying Rounds parachute into ULEB's second-tier Eurocup.
The next phase is the Regular Season, in which 24 teams participate; from 2009–10, the participants will include 22 clubs automatically entered into the Regular Season plus the two Qualifying Round winners. Each team plays two games (home-and-away) against every other team in its group. At the end of the Regular Season, the field is cut from 24 to 16. Before 2008–09, the teams were divided into three groups of eight teams each, with the top five teams in each group plus the top sixth-place finisher advancing. Now, the Regular Season involves four groups with six teams each, with the first four teams in each group advancing.
The second phase, known as the Top 16, then begins, featuring the 16 survivors of the Regular Season, drawn into four-team groups. As in the Regular Season, each Top 16 group is contested in a double round-robin format.
The third phase, the Quarterfinal round, has been played since the 2004–05 season. Before, only the group winners advanced to the Euroleague Final Four (see below). Now, the first- and second-place teams from each group advance. In the quarterfinal round, the first-place team from each group is matched against a second-place team from another group in a playoff series. Through the 2007–08 season, the series was best-of-three, and expanded to best-of-five for 2008–09. Home advantage in the series goes to the first-place team.
The Final Four, held at a predetermined site, features the winners of the four quarterfinal series in one-off knockout matches. The semifinal losers play for third place; the winners play for the championship.
For the 2012–13 Euroleague season the Top 16 was changed from four groups of four teams to two groups of eight teams. The four best teams in each group will go on the quarterfinals.
The league usually, but not always, includes domestic champions from the leading countries. Depending on the country, places in the Euroleague may be awarded on the basis of:
- Performance in the previous season's domestic league.
- Performance over the previous two or three domestic seasons.
- Contracts with Euroleague Basketball Company.
- In addition, the winner of the previous season's Eurocup receives a place.
For example, two 2007–08 domestic champions from ULEB member countries did not compete in the 2008–09 Euroleague—Zadar (Croatia) and Hapoel Holon (Israel). Zadar played in the second-level Eurocup in 2008–09. Hapoel Holon, however, did not compete in any of the three European continental club competitions—not even the third-tier EuroChallenge (which is run by FIBA Europe instead of Euroleague Basketball Company)—because of financial difficulties.
Starting with the 2009–10 season, the entrance criteria changed:
- A number of clubs chosen via a formula based on competitive performance, television revenues, and home attendance, receive "A Licenses", giving them automatic entry into the Euroleague regular season phase. Originally, 13 clubs received A Licenses, with Asseco Prokom Gdynia of Poland becoming the 14th before the 2011–12 season. A Licenses are awarded for three years, meaning that the next adjustment of A Licenses will not take place until 2012–13. However, Euroleague Basketball Company suspended the A License of Virtus Roma after the club finished in the bottom half of its domestic league in 2010–11.
- Eight clubs receive one-year "B Licenses" into the Euroleague regular season. Seven of them are directly based on the ranking of the domestic league in which the club competes. The eighth is a three-year "wild card" license based on similar factors to the A Licenses; the first such license was awarded to ASVEL Basket of France.
- The winner of the previous year's Eurocup receives a one-year "C License" into the Euroleague regular season. If the club qualifies for a direct B License into the regular season via its domestic league, the C License will be awarded to the club not already qualified for the regular season that is highest on the Euroleague entry list.
- Eight other clubs receive one-year "B Licenses" into the Euroleague qualifying rounds, with two advancing into the regular season.
Teams with A licence
Teams that lost the A license
Effective as of the 2012–13 season, Euroleague clubs with an "A License" must host their home matches in arenas that have a seating capacity of at least 10,000 people. In 2008, Euroleague Basketball Company decided to increase the arena seating requirement to 10,000 within four years time in order to force clubs to move into and/or build bigger arenas. This was done in hopes of increasing revenues through more ticket sales. Non "A License" Euroleague clubs must play in arenas that seat at least 5,000 people.
These are the teams that are participating in 2013–14 season:
Varèse (5), Olimpia Milano (3), Virtus Bologna (2), Cantù (2), Virtus Roma (1)
Varèse (5), Virtus Bologna (3), Olimpia Milano (2), Treviso (2), Fortitudo Bologna (1)
Real Madrid (8), Barcelona (2), Joventut Badalona (1)
Real Madrid (7), Barcelona (5), Baskonia (2), Joventut Badalona (1)
Panathinaikos (6), Olympiacos (3)
Olympiacos (3), AEK Athens (1), Panathinaikos (1)
CSKA Moscow (4), ASK Riga (3), Dinamo Tbilisi (1)
CSKA Moscow (3), Dinamo Tbilisi (1), ASK Riga (1), Žalgiris (1)
Split (3), Cibona (2), Bosna (1), Partizan (1)
Maccabi Tel Aviv (5)
Maccabi Tel Aviv (9)
CSKA Moscow (2)
CSKA Moscow (3)
Limoges CSP (1)
Spartak Brno (2), Slavia Prague (1)
- Real Madrid has been the most successful team, having won the competition a record eight times.
- Split (1989, 1990, 1991), is the only team to have won the competition three times in a row, in the Euroleague Final Four era (1987–88 season to present).
- ASK Riga as a soviet club in late '50s and early '60s (1958, 1959, 1960), is the only team to have won the competition three times in a row, in the pre-Euroleague Final Four era.
- Real Madrid (1964, 1965) & (1967, 1968) with Varèse (1972, 1973) & (1975, 1976) are the only teams to have won the European Championship twice in a row for two times in the pre-Euroleague Final Four era.
- Cantù (1982, 1983), Cibona (1985, 1986) and Olimpia Milano (1987, 1988) are the other three teams to have won the European Championship twice in a row (only for one time) in the pre-Euroleague Final Four era.
- Maccabi Tel Aviv (2004, 2005) and Olympiacos (2012, 2013) are the only teams to have won the Euroleague twice in a row, becoming back-to-back Euroleague champions in the Euroleague Basketball Company era (2000–01 season to present).
- Athens is the only city, from which seven different clubs: AEK Athens, Maroussi, Olympiacos, Panathinaikos, Panellinios, Panionios, and Peristeri have participated in the Euroleague.
- Although Israel is located in the Middle East, its teams play in the Euroleague, as its national federation is a member of FIBA Europe and its top professional league is a member of ULEB. (Similarly, the Israel Football Association is a member of UEFA, enabling its national team and clubs to play in UEFA competitions.)
- In the small area of less than 40 km² (25 mi²) in the northern metropolitan area of Milan, there are 3 clubs that have won a total of 10 European Champions' Cups, and played in a total of 16 finals: Olimpia Milano, Cantù, and Varèse.
- The record score differential for a final game was achieved in the 2004 finals, in Tel Aviv, where the home club Maccabi Tel Aviv, defeated Skipper Bologna, by a score of 118–74 (44-point difference).
- A crowd of 22,567, which filled Belgrade Arena on 5 March 2009 for a 2008–09 Top 16 match between KK Partizan and Panathinaikos is the official record. Before that 18,500 fans filling OAKA, achieved at a Panathinaikos home match at the Olympic Indoor Hall, Athens, against TAU Cerámica on 12 April 2006, for the 2005–06 third quarterfinal playoff game.The highest attendance ever recorded in Euroleague is an estimated crowd of more than 30.000 fans that overflowed the 20.000 capacity OAKA on 18 April 2013 for the match of the home team Panathinaikos against Barcelona for the 2012–13 Euroleague Quarter-finals.A match for which Panathinaikos was called to pay a fine of 30.000 Euros for overcrowding the arena.
Euroleague versus NBA games
|Points||Alphonso Ford||22.22||Juan Carlos Navarro||3,201|
|Rebounds||Joseph Blair||10.05||Mirsad Türkcan||1,287|
|Assists||Omar Cook||5.12||Theodoros Papaloukas||977|
|Steals||Emanuel Ginóbili||2.73||Dimitris Diamantidis||347|
|Blocks||Stephane Lasme||1.63||Fran Vázquez||198|
|Index Rating||Anthony Parker||21.41||Juan Carlos Navarro||3,049|
- 50 Greatest Euroleague Contributors
- Euroleague Awards
- Euroleague Basketball 2001–10 All-Decade Team
- Euroleague Basketball Manager
- Euroleague Finals
- Euroleague Final Four
- EuroLeague Women
- European Cup and Euroleague records and statistics
- FIBA European Champions Cup and Euroleague history
- FIBA EuroStars
- FIBA Festival
- Rosters of Top Teams in the European Club Competitions
- NBA 2K14
- "– Euroleague, Turkish Airlines sign strategic partnership deal". Euroleague.net. 26 July 2010.
- "Euroleague Basketball, Televisión Española (TVE) reach agreement in principle to broadcast Real Madrid's Turkish Airlines Euroleague games". Euroleague.net. 19 March 2013.
- "– CSPN China to broadcast Turkish Airlines Euroleague". Euroleague.net. 16 December 2010.
- "Live coverage of press conferences, juniors caps record television growth". Euroleague.net. 8 May 2013.
- "Turkish Airlines And Euroleague Basketball Sign Strategic Partnership Agreememt" (Press release). Euroleague Basketball. 28 July 2010. Retrieved 29 July 2010.
- "An important strategic partnership agreement between Turkish Airlines and Euroleague Basketball..." (Press release). Turkish Airlines. 26 July 2010. Retrieved 29 July 2010.
- "Euroleague assembly meets before 2011–12 draw" (Press release). Euroleague Basketball. 7 July 2011. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
- "New teams proposed as 2011–12 Turkish Airlines Euroleague participants" (Press release). Euroleague Basketball. 30 June 2011. Retrieved 1 August 2011.
- "Partizan sets crowd record at Belgrade Arena!". Euroleague.net. 5 March 2009. Retrieved 6 March 2009.
- "EB opens disciplinary proceedings against Panathinaikos". Euroleague.net. 22 April 2013.
- "Barcelona stay alive, take series back home". talkbasket.net. 19 April 2013.
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