Basketball Champions League CEO Patrick Comninos says the competition has a hugely exciting future following the success of its debut season which climaxed with Iberostar Tenerife being crowned the inaugural winners.
"History was made here and I'd like to congratulate Iberostar Tenerife on becoming the first winners of the Basketball Champions League," he said. "They say even the longest journey starts with a single step and this was a massive stride in the right direction.
"The vibrant and passionate atmosphere in the arena in Tenerife was simply amazing and we couldn't have wished for a better stage for the final. The entire island of Tenerife was buzzing and this made for the ideal images to conclude this season. Our first Final Four weekend marked the climax of a remarkable year in which a brand-new sporting competition was born and began to take root in the hearts of passionate fans here and across Europe."
FIRST SEASON OF BASKETBALL CHAMPIONS LEAGUE IN NUMBERS
18 National Champions
40 Teams in Regular Season
60 per cent of Games won by less than 10 points
550,000 Facebook Followers
€1,000,000 Winners Prize Money in 2017-18
26,500,000 Video views
50,000,000 Facebook fans reachBasketball Champions League, which is co-owned by FIBA and 10 national leagues, was launched to ensure that clubs from leagues across the continent can compete in top-class continental competition based on merit.
Comninos explained the rationale for the competition, saying: "This is about serving the clubs and providing a competition which enables them to develop and become stronger. European club competition drives up standards on the court and that will translate into stronger and better competition in domestic leagues and, ultimately, national teams.
"Basketball Champions League does not exist for its own sake but as part of a broader strategy to grow basketball across Europe. It is based on established sporting principles of inclusion by merit rather than commercial brand value, and is an integral part of the new European basketball eco-system.
"The competition was true to its values and delivered on its goals as our competition welcomed 18 national champions."