During their last meeting, EuroLeague Basketball Shareholders have approved improvements in Turkish Airlines EuroLeague proposed by EuroLeague Players Association, which is a historic achievement for EuroLeague players as well as a great accomplishment for ELPA, a young organization that recently marked a one-year anniversary.
ELPA managed to ensure a package of improvements for its members negotiated with EuroLeague management after gathering input from the players. Improvements will come into effect in 2019/2020 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague season, and are focused on the following areas: better regeneration of players, more comfortable traveling, reducing risk of injuries and stricter payment discipline.
An improved and more efficient system for preventing and sanctioning overdue payments will enter into force in the new EuroLeague season to increase protection of the players and ban disciplinary sanctions of the players in case of less efficient players’ performance or defeat of the team.
The biggest changes will be implemented in the area of basketball practices. For the first time, the earliest possible date for the start of training camp has been set (August 22nd for the season 2019/20), which means a significant reduction in number of practice days in preseason for majority of teams. In addition, there is a new regulation also in the number of allowed practices in the preseason as well as during the season. New regulations also include earliest allowed time for practice on the day after a game and one mandatory day off per week (excluding double round weeks).
Basketball players will see significant changes also in the area of regeneration due to improved traveling conditions, such as single rooms for all ELPA members, exit row seats on the planes and priority lanes at the airport. All ELPA members will continue to have the right to second medical opinion, which was negotiated by ELPA in the first months of its operation.
From now on, players won’t have to be concerned with slippery on-court stickers which were causing many serious, even season-ending injuries, because they will be banned from Turkish Airlines EuroLeague courts. Before each game, ball boys will be present on the court to help players during warm-up to prepare for the game.
Bostjan Nachbar, ELPA Managing Director:
“Improvements that players can enjoy next season are the result of months-long process and effort of the entire ELPA team, Player’s Board and cooperation of all ELPA members who have showed great understanding for ELPA’s mission in its first year of operation, and have put their time and effort to achieve something that no one has achieved before – fundamental changes in one of the international competitions for the benefit of the most important participants of the competition, the players. I am happy and proud that now the players finally have what they have dreamed of, a collective voice, which leads way to improvements enabling players better performance on the court and in the end it is also something that basketball fans will benefit from as well. But we will not stop here, we are already focused on preparations for extensive collective bargaining agreement and our aim is to have the agreement ready to enter into force for the season 2020/2021.”
Players explaining the improvements
— EuroLeague Players Association (@the_ELPA) July 12, 2019