Three more Spanish clubs will join title holders Iberostar Tenerife in the 2017-18 Basketball Champions League: UCAM Murcia, Movistar Estudiantes and Joventut Badalona.
The success of the inaugural season of the Basketball Champions League combined with the final victory of Iberostar Tenerife, the only Spanish representative last season, has raised strong interest in Spain. The decision of UCAM Murcia, Movistar Estudiantes and Joventut Badalona to participate in the Basketball Champions League provides the competition with a significant Spanish presence in its second year.
Movistar Estudiantes and Joventut Badalona mark their return to European competitions, where they have achieved major success. Movistar Estudiantes, with three Spanish Cups and many Euroleague participations, is a prominent force in Spanish basketball. Joventut Badalona holds one Euroleague trophy, one EuroCup, one EuroChallenge, two Korać Cups, four Spanish championships and eight Spanish Cups. UCAM Murcia, in its first European participation, attained the Top 16 of EuroCup last season.
The newly-confirmed clubs will face stiff competition in the Basketball Champions League which features top clubs from across Europe which qualify as a result of their performances in domestic leagues.
“I’m delighted to welcome four clubs from one of the strongest leagues in Europe and I’m convinced they will bring something special to next year’s competition,” said Basketball Champions League CEO Patrick Comninos.
“Their presence underscores the successful experience of Iberostar Tenerife, winner of the trophy last season, and we are pleased to see more Spanish clubs convinced by the truly pan-European nature of the Basketball Champions League and its focus on providing a great international competition for clubs based on merit.
“We are also thrilled to see that historical clubs chose the Basketball Champions League for their return to European competitions,” he said.
The new Basketball Champions League Regular Season gets under way on October 10. This year 32 teams will contest the Regular Season with eight qualifiers joining 24 directly qualified clubs. They will play in four groups of 8 teams each with the top four in each group going through to a home and away Round of 16 ahead of the Quarter-Finals which will determine the Final Four. The Final Four weekend will be hosted in the home city of one of the qualifying clubs.
An initial draw sorting the Qualification Rounds and the Regular Season phase will take place on Tuesday 11 July at the House of Basketball in Geneva, Switzerland.