By: Nick Gibson / @euro_adventures
After weeks of of speculation, our greatest fears have been realized: the Euroleague Lockin is upon us.
The news comes on a day when Euroleague Basketball, an official entity since 2000, snipped the ribbon on its new headquarters in beautiful Barcelona.
“The new offices of Euroleague Basketball answer to one simple reality: the growth of our league:” Euroleague Basketball CEO Jordi Bertomeu said. “Growth that has been accomplished in small steps, with plenty of debate; growth that has carried European basketball to 192 countries thanks to agreements with television broadcasters who have shown confidence in us; growth that has tripled the revenues of the company, thanks to the cooperation of our sponsors and partners; growth that has happened, too, in our arenas, where our club have also bet on future growth by building bigger venues and filling them. Congratulations are in order. The work of our clubs and our national leagues has taken us this far — and will carry us much further.”
Courtesy of Euroleague.net
Growth? Revenue? Larger arenas with crowds full of actual people? I don’t know about you guys, but that sounds like pretty ominous stuff to me. This is the sort of rhetoric which has many convinced that we might be forced to do the unthinkable this season: watch basketball games. I can hardly stomach it.
Even more discouraging was the apparent camaraderie between different factions of the basketball world: the active players like four-time EL champ Sarunas Jasikevicius; the retired greats, like two-time Final Four MVP Dejan Bodiroga; and even coaching phenom Zeljko Obradovic, owner of eight championships, all satisfied to smile for the cameras in the presence of the man responsible for all of this debauchery: Euroleague CEO Jordi Bertomeu.
Buckle up for a long one, folks. The Euroleague Lockin’s not going anywhere.