Photo: Bristol Flyers
The game continues to grow. The Bristol Flyers have had a very impressive domestic season, finishing with a 25-11 record which secured them the 3rd seed going into the playoffs. They've already defeated the Manchester Giants and are on their way to the semi-finals, further cementing themselves as one of the UK's top professional basketball clubs. It was only going to be a matter of time before they took their game further and now, ahead of the 23'/24' season, the Flyers have, with their announcement of their entrance into the European North Basketball League.
The ENBL is a new league, which is why i'm sure to many, upon hearing the announcement, a few eyebrows were raised. It was founded in 2021 and is for professional clubs in Northern, Central and Eastern Europe who wish to compete internationally at a high level, with a format based on the European Youth Basketball League –– a round-robin tournament with at least seven games in 3 stages, followed by a Final Four for the top for teams of the league. It's inaugral season featured teams from Poland, Russia, Belarus, Czech Republic, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, with Polish side BM Stal Ostrów taking the title.
With this announcement, the Bristol Flyers will be the first-ever British team to compete in the ENBL and add to the buzz that is currently surround British basketball at the professional level. The London Lions had a historic run in the EuroCup and the Leicester Riders also made their introduction to European basketball with their entrance into the FIBA Europe Cup. Now, the Flyers will do the same in the 23'/24' season with the ENBL.
"This is an exciting opportunity to experience European competition and what it takes to compete at this level, both on and off the court," said Andreas Kapoulas, Bristol Flyers Head Coach. "As a club we have been on an incredible journey over the last 18 years and with our new venue on the horizon, we want to continue our progress by taking the next steps in the development of our programme."