|Other club(s) from||Andorra|
|Number of teams||17|
|Level on pyramid||1|
|Relegation to||LEB Oro|
|Domestic cup(s)||Copa del Rey
Supercopa de España
|Current champions||Real Madrid
|Most championships||Real Madrid
(best match per round)
(rest of the matches)
The Liga ACB,[N 1] known as Liga Endesa[N 2] for sponsorship reasons, is the top professional basketball division of the Spanish basketball league system. Administrated by the Asociación de Clubs de Baloncesto (ACB), Liga ACB is contested by 17 teams, with the two lowest-placed teams relegated to the LEB Oro and replaced by the top team in that division plus the winner of the playoffs.
A total of 48 teams have competed in Liga ACB since its inception. Six teams have been crowned champions, with Real Madrid winning the title a record 33 times and FC Barcelona 18 times. Real Madrid dominated the championship from the 1950s through the 1970s when was organized by the Spanish Basketball Federation. From the 1980s onwards when the ACB took control over the league, FC Barcelona (15 titles) and Real Madrid (11 titles) both dominated, though Liga ACB also saw other champions, including Baskonia, Joventut Badalona, Málaga, and Manresa. In more recent years, Baskonia has joined a coalition of now three teams dominating Liga ACB alongside Real Madrid and FC Barcelona.
Liga ACB is one of the most popular professional indoor sports leagues in the world, with an average attendance of 6,375 for league matches in the 2014–15 season. This is the tenth-highest of any domestic professional indoor sports league in the world and the fourth-highest of any professional basketball league in the world, behind the National Basketball Association, the EuroLeague, and the Philippine Basketball Association.
- 1 Competition format
- 2 History
- 3 Title holders
- 4 Titles by club
- 5 ACB Finals
- 6 Current clubs
- 7 All-time Liga ACB table
- 8 Awards
- 9 ACB statistical leaders
- 10 ACB records
- 11 Spanish basketball clubs in European and worldwide competitions
- 12 Other competitions
- 13 Notes
- 14 References
- 15 External links
The competition format follows the usual double round-robin format. During the course of a season, which lasts from October to May, each club plays every other club twice, once at home and once away, for a total of 32 games. Teams receive one point for a win, and no points for a loss. Teams are ranked by total points, with the eight highest-ranked clubs at the end of the season plays the playoffs and the winner of the playoffs is crowned champion.
Promotion and relegation
A system of promotion and relegation exists between the Liga ACB and the LEB Oro. The two lowest placed teams in Liga ACB are relegated to the LEB Oro, and the top team from the LEB Oro promoted to Liga ACB, with an additional club promoted after a series of playoffs involving the second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth and ninth placed clubs. Below is a complete record of how many teams played in each season throughout the league's history;
Controversies about promotion to Liga ACB
Until 2012, in the 29 editions played of the Liga ACB only three teams resigned to promote due to acting as reserve teams or lack of funds. These three teams were CB Guadalajara and CB Cornellà in 1993 and CB Cajabilbao in 1994.
Since 2012, due to the financial crisis that started in 2008, only two teams (Canarias and Andorra) of the possible eight could promote to Liga ACB. This fact started a discussion about the requirements of the ACB in order to promote, considered by the LEB Oro clubs as "disproportionate".
For clubs that promote and would make their debut in the ACB demands:
- An arena with a minimum capacity of 5,000 seats.
- An inbound of €3m. For clubs that come back to the league after a promotion, an update of the inbound is demanded.
- A deposit of €1,7m that would be returned in case of relegation to LEB Oro. In case of a new promotion, this deposit is required to be restored.
- The conversion into a Sociedad Anónima Deportiva if the club remains in Liga ACB after its first season.
In 2012, Iberostar Canarias and Menorca Bàsquet achieved the promotion to ACB, but neither could fulfill the requirements in order to promote. However, Canarias finally played in ACB after buying the berth in the league of Lucentum Alicante, previously sold to the association.
In 2014 and 2015, CB Tizona, also Ford Burgos by sponsorship reasons, did not promote despite achieving the place two years in a row. After its second failed promotion, the third in the city of Burgos, the club sued the Association and this one accused them of "distorting the reality". Also in 2015, despite having played in the league during the 1980s and 1990s, Club Ourense Baloncesto was not admitted in the league despite fulfilling all the requirements after not passing an accounts audit. However, ACB would admit Ourense for the 2016–17 season if it fulfill the requirements regardless of their position in the 2015–16 LEB Oro season.
On 24 April 2016, the National Commission of the Markets and the Competence argued that the inboud impedes in an "unjustified, disproportionate and discriminatory" way the access of new clubs to Liga ACB.
On June 2016, the two promoted teams from LEB Oro (Palencia and Melilla) resigned to promote to the 2016–17 ACB season and requested to the ACB their sign in before the 2017–18 season. However, as Gipuzkoa Basket, who finished in relegation positions in three of the last four seasons, resigned to play in ACB, the Association offered again its place to Palencia and Melilla under these conditions:
- An arena with a minimum capacity of 5,000 seats.
- An inbound of €2m. The second million delayed on the dates agreed between the club and ACB.
- A deposit of €1,6m that would be returned in case of relegation to LEB Oro. In case of a new promotion, this deposit is required to be restored.
- The conversion into a Sociedad Anónima Deportiva before the start of their second season in Liga ACB.
In April 2017, the National Commission for Markets and Competition declared the entering inbound and the deposit for the regulation of promotions and relegations as illegal, as they consider it "unjustified, discriminatory and excessive". The Commission also imposed the ACB League a fine of €400,000.
Ranking of clubs on equal points
If points are equal between two or more clubs, the rules are:
- If all clubs involved have played each other twice:
- If the tie is between two clubs, then the tie is broken using the point difference for the two matches those clubs have played against each other
- If the tie is between more than two clubs, then the tie is broken using the games the clubs have played against each other:
- a) head-to-head wins
- b) head-to-head point difference
- c) head-to-head points scored
- If two legged games between all clubs involved have not been played, or the tie is not broken by the rules above, it is broken using:
- a) total point difference
- b) total points scored
- If the tie is still not broken, a new tiebreak process is initiated with only those teams that remain tied.
Qualifying for European competitions
The top teams in Liga ACB qualify for the EuroLeague and the EuroCup. Baskonia, FC Barcelona and Real Madrid directly enter the EuroLeague as licensed clubs. The first placed team (not counting licensed clubs) play in the EuroLeague. If the EuroCup champion is from Liga ACB, the EuroCup champion will play in the EuroLeague instead of first placed team that would play the EuroCup. Teams placed second, third and fourth (not counting licensed clubs) play in the EuroCup.
Titles by club
As Liga ACB is officially considered as the continuation of the defunct Liga Nacional, both competitions are considered in this table.
|Real Madrid||33||11||1957, 1958, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1979, 1980, 1982, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1993, 1994, 2000, 2005, 2007, 2013, 2015, 2016|
|FC Barcelona||18||20||1959, 1981, 1983, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1990, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1999, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2014|
|Joventut Badalona||4||10||1967, 1978, 1991, 1992|
|Baskonia||3||4||2002, 2008, 2010|
All-time Liga ACB table
|47||Ciudad de Huelva||1||39||11||28||–||–||–||–||–||1997–98||1997–98||17|
League or status at 2016–17 season:
|2016–17 ACB season|
|2016–17 LEB Oro season|
|2016–17 LEB Plata season|
|2016–17 Liga EBA season|
|Clubs that no longer exist or does not compete in senior competitions|
- ACB Most Valuable Player Award
- ACB Finals Most Valuable Player Award
- ACB Best Young Player Award
- All-ACB Team
- ACB Player of the Month Award
- ACB Best Coach
- AEEB Coach of the Year
- ACB contests
ACB statistical leaders
Main article: ACB statistical leaders
Liga ACB all-time scoring leaders
Liga ACB all-time rebounding leaders
Spanish basketball clubs in European and worldwide competitions