The CEO of the competition, Patrick Comninos, was delighted to welcome the participating teams. “We are very proud of receiving the teams competing for the first-ever Regular Season”, he said. "It's a noticeable milestone in the development of this ambitious competition. This first part of the season showed a high level of competitiveness with an impressive number of close games. This high level of competition is also proven when looking at the top standings of the participating teams in their respective national competitions. With 40 teams representing 22 different countries and 20 independent leagues, we are extremely proud of this truly pan-European competition that strives at delivering a very high standard of service to all participating teams”.
Welcomed by FIBA Secretary General, Patrick Baumann, the meeting was led by Basketball Champions League CEO, Patrick Comninos, together with Markus Studer, Chairman of the Board and FIBA Chief Operating Officer, and Kamil Novak, FIBA Executive Director - Europe.
The workshop highlighted some key strategic partnership that the Basketball Champions League has secured with the aim of developing a top tier competition, most notably with Perform for the sale of media rights, Icon for a uniform branding at all arenas and WSC for the creation of dedicated content to be shared by all stakeholders.
Furthermore, an analysis of key data of the first 140 games was shared with clubs, highlighting key indicators such as the fact that as of December 2nd, 75% of the 40 participating teams are positioned in the top 5 of their national league, 54% of the games have ended with less than 10 points difference (16% with less than 2 points) and no team remain undefeated or without a win. "All of the above serves to demonstrate that although some of Europe’s best teams are participating in the inaugural season of the Basketball Champions League, they are constantly tested and need to perform at their highest level in order to advance to the next rounds", said Patrick Comninos.
Mr. Marko Beens, Vice-President of MHP Riesen Ludwigsburg, was impressed by those numbers. “I have to thank the Basketball Champions League for this workshop and those staggering numbers", he said. "This will greatly help us in explaining to our market, our media partners and our fans the high-level and the positioning of the competition”.
Mr Aniano Cabrera Rodriguez, General Manager of Iberostar Tenerife, was in line with this comment. “So far, the Basketball Champions League has been a very good experience”, he said. “We are positively surprised and pleased with the organisation, from the sportive side up to the operational and broadcast aspects. The level of the competition is very high. Many teams within our group fight hard and can still qualify so the level is extremely competitive. Our expectations are high, both in the Spanish league and in the Basketball Champions League where we will do our best to reach the Playoffs”.
Can Köken, representing Besiktas Sompo Japan, was also convinced with this new competition. “We had some question marks at the beginning of the season, but once the competition started, we have seen the high level of organisation, which has been perfect so far”, he said. “We are therefore both happy and proud of being part of this inaugural season of the Basketball Champions League. Besiktas has already experienced the European level before, but the level of this competition is impressive. All games are close and every team can beat anybody, so our team will have to fight hard to get to the Final Four”.
Finally, Gaëtan Müller, CEO of ASVEL, could only but agree with previous comments. “ASVEL is part of this new competition and we take the challenge very seriously”, he said. "We must admit that the quality of the organisation is very high and our fans answer positively with 95% of attendance, so we are extremely happy so far. The level of the competition is interesting because it is very homogeneous. All the teams are fighting hard and we have already seen some surprises, so everyone will have to stay focus until the end of the Regular Season in order to qualify for the Playoffs”.