By Aris Barkas/ firstname.lastname@example.org
The ramifications of the announcement by Euroleague of its new project are already obvious all over Europe. The French teams are ready to play next season in the rival league organized by FIBA, while Real Madrid, Barcelona and Laboral Kutxa may threaten to leave Liga Endesa.
The president of the French league, Alain Beral, spoke in the print edition of “L’Equipe” newspaper and admitted: “We expect to see two rival leagues next season in Europe and our teams will play in the FIBA league”.
As he explained: “We, like the rest of the national leagues, we are part of a national federation and we have to follow its directions. If not, then we are in danger of our national teams being excluded from the international competitions of FIBA. Also in a 16 teams Euroleague we will be just the punching bags of the big clubs and I consider this a waste”.
In Spain, according to the “El Mundo Deportivo” newspaper, the Euroleague trio of Real Madrid, Barcelona and Laboral Kutxa will push for making Liga Endesa a 16 or even a 14 teams league, downgrading from its current 18 teams format.
If this doesn’t happen, then Real, Barca and Kutxa will have to play up to 90 official games per season. That’s why they are ready to even threaten the ACB that they will leave their domestic leagues. It’s not the first time that the Spanish Euroleague teams want their domestic league to have a more light schedule, but this time the need is more urgent than ever.