Changes for better

Photo: Alexander Natruskin. RIA Novosti.
Text: BEKO PBL Press service

Andrey Vatutin, head of the BEKO PBL Board and vice president of VTB United League has spoken to the media on Friday, January 27. He talked about future changes in Russian basketball and the foundation of Eastern European Professional Basketball League.

Need for unifcation

- Everyone, who is related to the Russian basketball, understands the necessity of the unification of these two Leagues. I think it's time to set a strict order of the national basketball to attract new sponsors and make it clear for the fans.

I've been appointed to lead the process of the foundation of a new tournament.

New tournament

- Each of these tournaments has its own advantages. The BEKO PBL is offically recognized by ULEB and has rights to host national championship. We're aiming to take good things from both competitions and create a new one, which will be the best. It's not correct to say that someone would lose after this unification. If the new event is interesting, that would be our main result.

Main directions of work

- At the moment we have these priorities directions:

  - create legal platform for the foundation of a new tournament

  - hold talks with Euroleague

  - form a new management, which will unite best Russian basketball specialists and will be headed         by Sergey Ivanov.

Ideally, the scheme of the Adriatic League would suit us. This issue will be the main one during our talks with Euroleague, which we will be doing carefully, creating clear realtionships. Also we'd like to raise the issue of a quota of Russian teams in the European competitions, which is very small at the moment in my opinion. That is due to old relationships between RBF and Euroleague, this has to change since a lot of time has passed.

Format of the tournament

- It is expected that 16 clubs will participate in the new tournament, the biggest part of which will represent Russia. I hope that the calendar of new competition will be balanced, and the whole amount of games in all tournaments won't be bigger than 70-75.

If for some reason the option of Adriatic League doesn't work, we'd hos Open Russian championship with the inclusion of foreign teams, which do not aim to qualify for Euroleague or Eurocup.


- I think we can soilve the issue of Spartak-Primorie Vladivostok playing in the new tournament. The club has promised to build a new 10-thousand seats arena in one year, their current arena doesn't meet the BEKO PBL requirements on seats and infrastructure. You can't dramatize the situation, saying that some Russian region won't be able to play in the new tournament. There is a number of requirements set by the new tournamet, if club meets it, it will play. I like the current situatin on this issue in the BEKO PBL, where the League's meeting decides whether to include a team.


- I hope that all the current sponsore of the BEKO PBL and VTB League would keep their interest in basketball, and we'll continue working together. I'm sure there is no conflict of interests, and we'll ba able to find a solution.

Russian Basketball Federation

- Yesterday there was made a decision that current agreement between RBF and BEKO PBL will be optimized and the end of this season the licence to host Russian championship will be given to the new tournament. We have verbal agreement with head of the fedartion Aleksander Krasnenkov. He fully supports us. Also we have agreed on the amount of money the new tournament will have to pay to host Russian championship, it's early to announce it though.


- We'll try to appoint best referees to work at the new tournament, both Russian and foreign ones.


All tranfers for 2012/2013 by 31.08.


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