VTB League reduced to 13 teams, best-of-three playoff series

2019-07-14T18:08:08+00:00 2019-07-14T18:09:30+00:00.

Stefan Djordjevic

14/Jul/19 18:08


VTB League announced the changes for the 2019-20 season

By Stefan Djordjevic/ info@eurohoops.net

VTB League announced today (14/7) the changes for the 2019-20 season which include fewer teams and a different playoff format.

As VEF Riga is leaving the competition due to funding cuts, next season will feature 13 instead of 14 teams. Riga may return in the 2020-21 season.

There won’t be a replacement for Riga as no clubs meet the necessary requirements according to the honorary league president Sergey Ivanov: “The regulations clearly state what the club should have for the league to consider its application. First of all, this is an arena with a capacity of 5,000 people and a confirmed budget of at least 3 million euros. To date, there are no candidates that meet these requirements.”

The second change is about the number of playoff games. So far, the series were played in a best-of-five format but it will ba changed to a best-of-three format next season.

This is due to Turkish Airlines EuroLeague expansion – which will also include three Russian clubs (CSKA, Khimki, Zenit) – and due to the 2020 Olympic Games because of which FIBA insisted for the domestic leagues to end no later than July 12.

“The format of the playoffs will change – all series, including the final one, will go through to 2 wins in the 1-1-1 format. Because of the Olympics in Tokyo, FIBA ​​turned to all of the world’s basketball leagues to finish the season on June 12, no later. Therefore, we had to compress the calendar”, Ivanov explained.

Photo Credit: VTB United League