VTB United League (Russian: Единая Лига ВТБ) is an international professional men's club basketball league that was founded in 2009. It is made up of mostly Russian clubs, along with one each from Belarus and Kazakhstan. Since 2013, it is the first tier of Russian professional club basketball. Therefore, the highest placed Russian team in the league can also be named the Russian national champions.[citation needed] The league is sponsored by Russian state-owned VTB Bank. In 2009 CSKA Moscow won VTB United League Promo-Cup, but this competition does not count as official VTB title. CSKA has dominated the league, having won majority of titles its existence. The VTB United League also holds a youth competition, the VTB United Youth League.

VTB United League
Founded2009; 15 years ago (2009)
First season2009–10
CountryRussia
Other club(s) fromBelarus
Kazakhstan
ConfederationFIBA Europe
FIBA Asia
Number of teams14
Level on pyramid1
Domestic cup(s)Russian Cup
SupercupVTB League Supercup
International cup(s)EuroLeague (suspended)
EuroCup (suspended)
Champions League (suspended)
Europe Cup (suspended)
West Asia Super League
Current championsUNICS (1st title)
Most championshipsCSKA Moscow (10 titles)
Websitevtb-league.com
2022–23 season

History edit

The first step in the creation of the league was a competition named the VTB United League Promo-Cup held in Moscow in December 2009.[1] The final of the Promo-Cup was played on December 22, 2009, and was won by CSKA Moscow, who defeated Khimki 70–66. Kyiv ended third.[2]

Unification with the Russian PBL edit

In May 2012, all the PBL clubs gathered to decide which format would be used for the next season, and some club's directors raised the possibility of uniting with the VTB United League, to produce greater competition between the Russian basketball clubs. They suggested that the new league be named the Eastern European Professional Basketball League.[3][4][5]

In July 2012, the Council of VTB United League decided that the PBL league would continue for one more year, with some games of the VTB United League that took place between two Russian clubs being counted as PBL games.[6] The first tier Russian clubs then replaced the PBL with the VTB United League as their new national domestic league, starting with the 2013-14 season.[citation needed]

The VTB United League was recognized by FIBA Europe in September 2013.[7][8] The league was then officially recognized by FIBA World in October 2014. The league needed to be recognized by both bodies, because it contains clubs that come from countries that are part of both the European and Asian FIBA zones.[citation needed]

The honorary head of the league is Sergei Ivanov and its official sponsor is Pavel Vrublevsky of ChronoPay.[9][10][11]

Formats edit

In its inaugural 2009–10 season, the VTB United League featured clubs from Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Russia, and Ukraine. For the 2010–11 season, teams from Belarus, Finland, and Poland were added to the league. The 2011–12 season featured 18 teams, with new teams being added from the Czech Republic and Kazakhstan.[12] In the 2012–13 season, the number of teams increased to 20. The number of teams decreased to 16 for the 2014–15 season, and the teams from Lithuania and Ukraine dropped out of the league.

During the 2021–22 season, ten teams were left to compete after the Polish and Estonian clubs withdrew from the league in protest against the Russian invasion of Ukraine.[13]

Arena rules edit

In order for clubs to play in the VTB United League, they must have a home arena that has a seating capacity of at least 3,000 seats.[14]

Current clubs edit

Locations of teams in the 2022–23 VTB United League
Team Home city Arena Capacity
  Astana Astana Arena Velotrack 9,270[15]
  Avtodor Saratov DS Kristall 5,500[16]
  CSKA Moscow Moscow Megasport Arena 13,344[17]
  Yenisey Krasnoyarsk Arena.Sever 4,000[18]
  Lokomotiv-Kuban Krasnodar Basket-Hall 7,500[19]
  MBA Moscow Moscow Basket Hall Moscow 5,000
  MINSK Minsk Falcon Club Arena
Minsk-Arena 15,000[20]
  Nizhny Novgorod Nizhny Novgorod Trade Union Sport Palace 5,500[21]
  PARMA-PARI Perm UDS Molot 7,000
  Samara Samara Ice Sports Palace 5,000
  UNICS Kazan Basket-Hall 7,000[22]
  Zenit Saint Petersburg Saint Petersburg Sibur Arena 6,381[23]


Team appearances edit

Team 2008
(8)
09–10
(8)
10–11
(12)
11–12
(18)
12–13
(20)
13–14
(20)
14–15
(16)
15–16
(16)
16–17
(13)
17–18
(13)
18–19
(14)
19–20
(13)
20–21
(13)
21–22
(12)
22–23
(12)
  Tsmoki-Minsk GS GS GS GS 14th 12th 12th 9th 14th (13th) 13th 9th 12th
  Nymburk GS GS GS 15th QF
  Kalev/Cramo GS GS GS GS 9th 14th 11th 12th QF (8th) 10th Ret
  Bisons Loimaa 13th 13th
  Espoon Honka GS
  Torpan Pojat QR
  VITA Tbilisi 16th
  Astana 1/8 1/8 QF 15th QF 10th QF (9th) 12th 10th 11th
  ASK Rīga 7th
  VEF Rīga GS GS QF GS GS 11th QF QF 10th
  Lietuvos rytas GS 3rd GS SF
  Neptūnas GS GS
  Šiauliai QR
  Žalgiris 5th 3rd 1/8 1/8 3rd
  Anwil QR
  Prokom 8th GS GS
  Turów GS GS
  Zielona Góra 12th (7th) QF Ret
  Avtodor QF QF 10th QF 11th (12th) 9th QF QF
  CSKA 1st 1st 2nd 1st 1st 1st 1st 1st 1st 1st 1st (2nd) 1st 2nd 3rd
  Dynamo 4th
  Enisey GS GS 1/8 11th 10th QF 13th 9th (11th) 11th QF 9th
  Khimki 2nd 4th 1st QF 4th QF 2nd SF 2nd 2nd 2nd (1st) QF
  Krasny Oktyabr 1/8 12th 9th
  Krasnye Krylia GS QF QF 16th
  Lokomotiv Kuban 4th 2nd QF SF QF SF QF QF (3rd) SF 4th 2nd
  Nizhny Novgorod 1/8 QF 2nd SF QF 9th QF QF (10th) QF QF QF
  Parma 13th 11th 13th (5th) QF QF QF
  Spartak QF 1/8 1/8
  Triumph 1/8 QF
  UNICS 2nd 3rd 2nd QF SF QF 2nd QF 4th SF (4th) 2nd 3rd 1st
  Zenit QF SF SF 3rd SF (6th) SF 1st 2nd
  Azovmash 6th GS 4th GS GS GS
  Budivelnyk GS
  Dnipro GS QR
  Donetsk GS 1/8 GS
  Kyiv 3rd

Results edit

Key to colors
     VTB United League Promo-Cup
Season Finals & Final four hosts Finals Third Place Playoff
Gold Score Silver Bronze Score Fourth place
2008
Details
  Russia
(USK CSKA, Moscow)
 
CSKA Moscow
70–66  
Khimki
 
Kyiv
86–73  
Dynamo Moscow
2009–10
Details
  Lithuania
(Sports Hall, Kaunas)
 
CSKA Moscow
66–55  
UNICS
 
Žalgiris
78–72  
Khimki
2010–11
Details
  Russia
(Basket Hall, Kazan)
 
Khimki
66–64  
CSKA Moscow
 
UNICS
95–75  
Azovmash
2011–12
Details
  Lithuania
(Siemens Arena, Vilnius)
 
CSKA Moscow
74–62  
UNICS
 
Lietuvos rytas
91–83  
Lokomotiv Kuban
2012–13
Details
In home and away venues  
CSKA Moscow
3–1
Series
 
Lokomotiv Kuban
 
Žalgiris
Did not play  
Khimki
2013–14
Details
In home and away venues  
CSKA Moscow
3–0
Series
 
Nizhny Novgorod
 
UNICS
Did not play  
Lietuvos rytas
2014–15
Details
In home and away venues  
CSKA Moscow
3–0
Series
 
Khimki
 
Lokomotiv Kuban
Did not play  
Nizhny Novgorod
2015–16
Details
In home and away venues  
CSKA Moscow
3–1
Series
 
UNICS
 
Zenit Saint Petersburg
Did not play  
Khimki
2016–17
Details
In home and away venues  
CSKA Moscow
3–0
Series
 
Khimki
 
Zenit Saint Petersburg
Did not play  
Lokomotiv Kuban
2017–18
Details
  Russia
(VTB Ice Palace, Moscow)
 
CSKA Moscow
95–84  
Khimki
 
Zenit Saint Petersburg
93–79  
UNICS
2018–19
Details
In home and away venues  
CSKA Moscow
3–0
Series
 
Khimki
 
UNICS
Did not play  
Zenit Saint Petersburg
2019–20
Details
Cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic - no champion announced.
2020–21
Details
In home and away venues  
CSKA Moscow
3–0
Series
 
UNICS
 
Lokomotiv Kuban
Did not play  
Zenit Saint Petersburg
2021–22
Details
In home and away venues  
Zenit Saint Petersburg
4–3
Series
 
CSKA Moscow
 
UNICS
3–1
Series
 
Lokomotiv Kuban
2022–23
Details
In home and away venues  
UNICS
4–1
Series
 
Lokomotiv Kuban
 
CSKA Moscow
4–1
Series
 
Zenit Saint Petersburg
^† The whole 2008 tournament was staged in Moscow, including the Final Four.

2008 tournament does not count as official VTB title.

Titles by club edit

Club Champions Runners-up Winning years
CSKA Moscow 10 2 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2021
Khimki 1 4 2011
UNICS 1 4 2023
Zenit Saint Petersburg 1 0 2022
Lokomotiv Kuban 0 2
Nizhny Novgorod 0 1

Abroad competitions edit

Major awards edit

Awards by nationality edit

Statistical awards edit

Records edit

Sponsorship edit

Andrey Kostin's VTB Bank has been a long-term league sponsor. However, it recorded losses of connected to other sponsorships (FC Dynamo Moscow and HC Dynamo Moscow) and contributions to charities. This led to the Bank of Moscow joining as main sponsor.[24]

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ "About League". vtb-league.com. Archived from the original on 2009-10-19. Retrieved 2009-10-15.
  2. ^ "PROMO-CUP: CSKA WIN". Sport Express. Archived from the original on 2011-07-19. Retrieved 2009-10-24.
  3. ^ 20 clubs will play in VTB United League championship in seasone-2012/13 Archived 2012-06-09 at the Wayback Machine, vtb-league.com, May 20, 2012
  4. ^ "PBL looks to a better future". ULEB. 30 January 2012. Retrieved 4 February 2012.
  5. ^ Triumph applied an application to participate in the new season of VTB United League Archived 2013-10-14 at the Wayback Machine, May 20, 2012, vtb-league.com
  6. ^ BEKO PBL Press service. "BEKO PBL Board suggests scheme of 2012/2013 season". pbleague.ru. Retrieved 26 August 2012.
  7. ^ VTB League Officially Recognised.
  8. ^ "FIBA Europe officially recognizes VTB United League". Archived from the original on 2014-10-12. Retrieved 2014-10-07.
  9. ^ Михайлов, Сергей (Mikhailov, Sergey) (9 June 2015). "Схемщик нашел прибежище: Что ищет в России Беглый Украинский ехс-депутат Шепелев" [The schemer found refuge: What the runaway Ukrainian ex-duputy Shepelev seeks in Russia]. «Соверше́нно секре́тно» ("Top secret") (in Russian). Archived from the original on 19 August 2016. Retrieved 25 January 2021.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  10. ^ Михайлов, Сергей (Mikhailov, Sergey) (9 June 2015). "Схемщик нашел прибежище: Что ищет в России беглый Украинский экс-депутат Шепелев" [The schemer has taken refuge: What the fugitive Ukrainian ex-deputy Shepelev is looking for in Russia]. «Соверше́нно секре́тно» ("Top secret") (in Russian). Archived from the original on 9 September 2015. Retrieved 25 January 2021.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  11. ^ "Врублевский: ЕЛ ВТБ — это возрождение баскетбола в России" [Vrublevsky: EL VTB is the revival of basketball in Russia]. championat.com (in Russian). 29 April 2011. Retrieved 25 January 2021.
  12. ^ "New clubs in the VTB United League". VTB United League. 28 March 2011. Retrieved 28 March 2011.
  13. ^ "Zielona Gora joins Kalev/Cramo in departing the VTB United League". eurohoops.net. 25 February 2022. Retrieved 25 February 2022.
  14. ^ "Krasnye Krylia not to compete in VTB United League next season". Archived from the original on 2015-07-21. Retrieved 2015-07-21.
  15. ^ "VTB United League". www.vtb-league.com. Archived from the original on 9 August 2019. Retrieved 30 November 2017. Arena Velotrack Capacity: 9270 spectators
  16. ^ "VTB United League". www.vtb-league.com. Archived from the original on 18 October 2019. Retrieved 30 November 2017. DS Kristall Capacity: 5500
  17. ^ "VTB United League". www.vtb-league.com. Archived from the original on 18 October 2019. Retrieved 30 November 2017.
  18. ^ "VTB United League". www.vtb-league.com. Archived from the original on 9 August 2019. Retrieved 30 November 2017. Arena.Sever Capacity: 4000 spectators
  19. ^ "VTB United League". www.vtb-league.com. Archived from the original on 20 August 2019. Retrieved 30 November 2017. «Basket-hall» Capacity: 7500 spectators
  20. ^ "VTB United League". www.vtb-league.com. Archived from the original on 13 August 2019. Retrieved 30 November 2017. «Minsk-Arena» Capacity: 15,000 spectators
  21. ^ "VTB United League". www.vtb-league.com. Archived from the original on 18 October 2019. Retrieved 30 November 2017. «Nizhniy Novgorod Trade Union Sport Palace» Capacity: 5500 spectators
  22. ^ "VTB United League". www.vtb-league.com. Archived from the original on 18 October 2019. Retrieved 30 November 2017. Basket-Hall Capacity: 7000 spectators
  23. ^ "VTB United League". www.vtb-league.com. Archived from the original on 17 August 2019. Retrieved 30 November 2017. SK Yubileyniy Capacity: 6381 spectators
  24. ^ Воронова, Татьяна (Voronova, Tatiana); Еремина, Анна (Eremina, Anna); Казакулова, Галина (Kazakulova, Galina) (16 April 2015). "Убытки – не помеха для благотворительности ВТБ: В I квартале 2015 года госбанк получил 5 млрд рублей убытка и при этом 15,5 млрд рублей потратил на благотворительность" [Losses are not a hindrance to VTB's charity: In the first quarter of 2015, the state bank received 5 billion rubles in losses and at the same time spent 15.5 billion rubles on charity]. Vedomosti (in Russian). Retrieved 25 January 2021.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)

External links edit