Paris Basketball: The best BKT EuroCup champion ever

2024-04-15T14:00:54+00:00 2024-04-15T11:49:45+00:00.

Alex Molina Perello

15/Apr/24 14:00

The French capital’s team will join the Turkish Airlines Euroleague thanks to an almost perfect season in the BKT EuroCup, losing only one game for an unforgettable run to its first continental trophy

By Alex Molina /

The best team in the 2023-24 BKT EuroCup season lifted the trophy. After a dominating display during the regular season, Paris Basketball defeated Minidelice JL Bourg en Bresse to win the title, earning the right to play next season’s Turkish Airlines EuroLeague thanks to the team’s first-ever European title.

Paris’s victory over the French side, one of the few times two teams from the same country have met for the BKT EuroCup trophy, was a sweep that felt like it couldn’t be otherwise, as the French capital’s team has set a new all-time best record in the competition. Thanks to their 2-0 finals win against Mincidelice JL Bourg en Bresse, the best team in the regular season’s Group B, Paris Basketball achieved a near-perfect 22-1 balance for the whole season.

After a 17-1 run in the regular season (they only lost to Besiktas Emlakjet Istanbul), they had a perfect 5-0 post-season record to set a new record. The team with the previous best record in the whole BKT EuroCup history was 2014-15 Lokomotiv Kuban Krasnodar. The Russian side was able to achieve an outstanding 19-1 record… but they weren’t able to deliver when it mattered the most. After a perfect 16-0 in the regular season and a 2-0 in the Eighthfinals, they lost 79-58 against UNICS in the second game of the Quarterfinals, ultimately being eliminated from the post-season due to overall cumulative score.

Paris Basketball has beaten the record of Dreamland Gran Canaria, last season’s winners, which was also registered in the 2014-15 season. The Spanish side lost against Khimki Moscow Region in the finals, but they set the record for the most wins in a season, a total of 21 thanks to their 15-1 in the regular season, 2-0 in the eighthfinals, 2-0 in the quarterfinals and 2-0 in the semifinals, a balance they couldn’t improve any more after being defeated 0-2 in the finals.

We have seen plenty of times how the best team in the regular season is not able to raise the cup and we have a very clear example. Since the format change, the Turkish Airlines EuroLeague regular season champion has yet to win the title. But this Paris Basketball is something different and they were able to dominate the competition from the beginning to the end.

T. J. Shorts: The best of the best

And there was someone who played a crucial role in Paris’s sweeping success. Saying that TJ Shorts was the best player in the season is as obvious as it gets.

He was the best in the regular season (earning three MVP of the Round awards and averaging 17.3 points, 7.6 assists, and a league-high 22.6 PIR); the best in the quarterfinals (21 points, 9 assists and 28 PIR against Joventut Badalona); the best in the semifinals (22 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists, 4 steals and 28.5 PIR against London Lions); and the best in the finals averaging 18.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 4.5 assists for 24 PIR, leaving Bourg no room for hope.

Despite this being his first season in BKT EuroCup, Shorts averaged 18 points, 3.4 rebounds, 7.3 assists, 1.9 steals, and 23.4 PIR throughout 23 games, and this is what truly makes his season so remarkable: Shorts not only has been the best among all players who played this year, he has bested the best to ever play in the BKT EuroCup.

His 2023-24 PIR average beats Michael Wright’s 22.8, which means Shorts currently holds the best PIR average for the 22 seasons of the competition.