|Number of teams||16|
|Level on pyramid||1|
|Relegation to||Serie A2|
|Domestic cup(s)||Coppa Italia|
Basketball Champions League
FIBA Europe Cup
|Current champions||Reyer Venezia (4th title) |
|Most championships||Olimpia Milano (28 titles)|
|TV partners||Rai Sport|
|2020–21 LBA season|
The Lega Basket Serie A, officially abbreviated as LBA, (English: Serie A Basketball League) is a professional men's club basketball league that has been organised in Italy since 1920, run by Lega Basket, which is regulated by the Federazione Italiana Pallacanestro (FIP, Italian Basketball Federation). It is the highest-tier level of the Italian league system. The LBA plays under FIBA rules and currently consists of 17 teams, with the lowest-placed team relegated to the Serie A2 and replaced by the winner of the play-offs of that tier.
A total of 99 teams have competed in the LBA since its inception. Seventeen teams have been crowned champions, with Olimpia Milano having a winning title cache record 28 times, and Virtus Bologna 15 times. According to FIBA Europe's and Euroleague Basketball's national league coefficients, the LBA was the historically top ranked national domestic league in Europe, for the period 1958 to 2007. Today, the LBA is considered to be one of the top European national basketball leagues. Its clubs have won the most EuroLeague championships (13), the most FIBA Saporta Cups (15), and the most FIBA Korać Cups (10).
On 7 October 2016, following an investigation for accounting and fiscal fraud, the Court of the Italian Basketball Federation has revoked the championship titles awarded to Mens Sana Siena for the 2011-2012 and 2012-2013 seasons, two Italian Cups (2012 and 2013) and the 2013 Supercoppa. The revocation came after the prosecutor's office recommended such measures following the charging of club leaders with receiving stolen goods, criminal association for tax fraud and fraudulent bankruptcy. Former general manager, Ferdinando Minucci, vice president Paola Serpi and sports director Olga Finetti were all removed from their positions. Under the name Montepaschi Siena, derived from sponsor Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena, the club was a dominant presence in LBA, winning 5 titles in a row from 2006-07 to 2010-11, besides the two more titles now revoked by the Italian Federation, whilst also challenging for titles in Europe. On 18 April 2017, CONI annulled the decision of the Italian Basketball Federation. After financial problems caused the club to go bankrupt in 2014, it moved down to the fourth division. It is now in Serie A2, the second division.
Egidio Bianchi, President of LBA, said that there should be more severe rules. Bianchi announced: "we will propose stricter checks which should enter into force as early as the next season begin. The goal is to have more detailed documentation for admission of teams at the Italian League and also more accurate controls during the season".
In December 2016 in Rome, at the assembly of Lega Basket the president Egidio Bianchi communicated to all the clubs had reached a multi-year agreement with PosteMobile, an Italy-based mobile virtual network operator owned by Poste italiane Group, to become the Title Sponsor of the LBA.
|1998–1999||Ford Puma||Ford Puma Trophy|
|2003–2009||TIM||Serie A TIM|
|2009–2012||Agos Ducato||Agos Ducato Serie A|
|2012–2016||Beko||Serie A Beko|
|2016–2019||PosteMobile||Serie A PosteMobile|
Following the end of the 2015–16 season, LBA has a new sponsor. The Turkish brand Beko left LBA after four years of sponsorship, and all its other basketball team sponshorships in Europe. Beko would focus on their sponsorship of the Spanish football team Barcelona.
In December 2016, President Egidio Bianchi had communicated to have reached an agreement with PosteMobile to become the title sponsor of the LBA. In July 2019, LBA announced that the agreement with PosteMobile for LBA ended on June 30.
The competition format follows a double round-robin format. During the course of a season, which lasts from October to May, each club plays each other twice (once at home and once away), for a total of 30 games. Teams rankings at season end is determined by receiving two points for a win and no points for a loss. At season end, the eight top teams play-off, pitting the first place standings team against the 8th place team, and so on.
There are three playoff rounds. The Quarterfinals are best of five, while the semifinals and finals series are best of seven (in the 2012–13 season, all series were best-of-seven). The winner of the finals round is the champion of the LBA.
LBA clubs must play in arenas that seat at least 3,500 people. From 2017 to 2018 season, clubs must host their home playoffs matches in arenas that have a seating capacity of at least 5,000 people.
Each team is allowed either five or seven foreign players under two formulas:
- 5 foreigners from countries outside the European Union
- 3 foreigners from countries outside the E.U., 4 foreigners from E.U. countries (also including those from countries signatory of the Cotonou Agreement)
Each club can choose the 5+5 formula, that consists of five Italian players and five foreign players, and the 3+4+5 formula, with five Italian players, three foreigners from countries outside the E.U. and four foreigners from E.U. countries or "Cotonou Countries".
At the end of the season there is a prize of €500,000 for the top three ranked teams, that had chosen the 5+5 formula, considering the playing time of Italian players, and €200,000 for those teams that will obtain the best results with their youth sector.
Qualifying for European competitions
From 2017 to 2018 season, Italian Basketball Federation would allow LBA clubs to rejoin EuroCup. There will be at least six teams in Europe. One in EuroLeague (Olimpia Milano directly enter the EuroLeague as licensed club), two in EuroCup (but they are negotiating with ECA for a third spot) and three in Basketball Champions League. Lega Basket decided Italian Clubs will be free to choose in which European Cup they want to play, based on final ranking and sports merit.
For the 2017–18, 2018–19 and 2019–20 seasons, domestic TV rights are shared by Rai Sport and Eurosport. The new frame shows Rai airing one game every Sunday on free TV, while Eurosport is the new owner of the pay TV, international and internet rights of the LBA. Eurosport has TV rights also for Supercoppa and Coppa Italia.
All matches are broadcast live on internet pay TV service.
Venues and locations
List of champions
Performance by club
|Olimpia Milano||28||1935–36, 1936–37, 1937–38, 1938–39, 1949–50, 1950–51, 1951–52, 1952–53, 1953–54, 1956–57, 1957–58, 1958–59, 1959–60, 1961–62, 1962–63, 1964–65, 1965–66, 1966–67, 1971–72, 1981–82, 1984–85, 1985–86, 1986–87, 1988–89, 1995–96, 2013–14, 2015–16, 2017–18|
|Virtus Bologna||15||1945–46, 1946–47, 1947–48, 1948–49, 1954–55, 1955–56, 1975–76, 1978–79, 1979–80, 1983–84, 1992–93, 1993–94, 1994–95, 1997–98, 2000–01|
|Varese||10||1960–61, 1963–64, 1968–69, 1969–70, 1970–71, 1972–73, 1973–74, 1976–77, 1977–78, 1998–99|
|Mens Sana 1871||6||2003–04, 2006–07, 2007–08, 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11|
|Assi Milano||6||1921, 1922, 1924, 1925, 1926, 1927|
(formerly Ginnastica Triestina)
|5||1930, 1932, 1934, 1939–40, 1940–41|
|Treviso||5||1991–92, 1996–97, 2001–02, 2002–03, 2005–06|
|Ginnastica Roma||4||1928, 1931, 1933, 1935|
|Reyer Venezia||4||1941–42, 1942–43, 2016–17, 2018–19|
|Cantù||3||1967–68, 1974–75, 1980–81|
|Victoria Libertas||2||1987–88, 1989–90|
|Fortitudo Bologna||2||1999–00, 2004–05|
Bold indicates clubs which will play in the 2019–20 LBA season.
Italian basketball clubs in European and worldwide competitions
Lega Basket All Star Game
- "Virtus Bologna relegated for the first time". Eurohoops. 4 May 2016. Retrieved 5 May 2016.
- "Basket Serie A, revocati due scudetti di Siena" [Basket Serie A, Siena's two championship titles have been revoked]. corrieredellosport.it (in Italian). Retrieved 10 October 2016.
- "Federation revokes Siena titles (3)". ansa.it. Archived from the original on 22 March 2019. Retrieved 10 October 2016.
- "Basket, Bianchi: "Siena? Lega aumenterà i controlli"" [Basketball, Bianchi: "Siena? Lega will increase controls"]. repubblica.it (in Italian). Retrieved 10 October 2016.
- "LBA, ecco il nuovo Title Sponsor: accordo pluriennale con PosteMobile" [LBA, here it is the new Title Sponsor: multi-year agreement with PosteMobile]. Legabasket.it (in Italian). Retrieved 17 December 2016.
- "Il marchio Beko lascerà il basket. Il CEO Mangiacotti avrà un futuro in Lega?" [Beko is going to leave basketball. Mangiacotti (CEO of Beko) could have a future in Lega]. basketnet.it (in Italian). Retrieved 19 June 2016.
- "PosteMobile nuovo sponsor Lega Basket" [PosteMobile is the new sponsor of Lega Basket]. www.ansa.it (in Italian). Retrieved 17 December 2016.
- "Lega Basket: non ci saranno più né Avellino né Poste Mobile" [Lega Basket: there will be no more Avellino nor Poste Mobile]. basketuniverso.it (in Italian). Retrieved 12 July 2018.
- Lega Società di Pallacanestro Serie A, REGOLAMENTO ESECUTIVO#Chapter 3.2 (G), Page 4
- "Consiglio FIP sugli impianti per i playoff: dal 2017-2018 non meno di 5.000 posti" [FIP Board on the arenas for the playoffs: from 2017-2018 no less than 5,000 seats]. sportando.com (in Italian). Retrieved 5 March 2017.
- "Serie A, dal prossimo anno i Cotonou saranno considerati comunitari" [Serie A, from the next year the Cotonou players will be considered as Europeans]. sportando.com (in Italian). Retrieved 26 June 2012.
- "Premio italiani a quota 700.000 euro" [Italian prize will be of 700,000 Euros]. sportando.com (in Italian). Retrieved 11 October 2014.
- "Italian teams withdraw from Eurocup!". Eurohoops.net. 8 July 2016. Retrieved 21 July 2016.
- "Italian teams to compete in EuroCup again from next season". sportando.com. Retrieved 13 March 2017.
- "Italian Serie A Clubs will be free to choose in which European Cup they want to play next season". sportando.com. Retrieved 20 March 2017.
- "Italian League assembly approves sale of TV rights". Sportando.com. 13 July 2017. Retrieved 13 July 2017.
- "Ad Eurosport il pacchetto PAY di Serie A, Supercoppa e Coppa Italia. Il GM di Discovery: Gran colpo" [Eurosport has pay TV rights for Serie A, Supercoppa and Coppa Italia. GM of Discovery Channel: Great hit]. Sportando.com (in Italian). 12 July 2017. Retrieved 13 July 2017.
- "Egidio Bianchi: svolta epocale per la LBA. Tutte le gare saranno trasmesse live su Internet" [Egidio Bianchi: Epoch-making for the LBA. All competitions will be broadcast live on Internet]. Sportando.com (in Italian). 13 July 2017. Retrieved 13 July 2017.
- Acqua S.Bernardo Cantù. (in Italian)
- Alma Trieste. (in Italian)
- CHI SIAMO. (in Italian)
- Banco di Sardegna Sassari. (in Italian)
- Consultinvest Pesaro. (in Italian)
- "PalaVerde". TrevisoBasket.it (in Italian). Retrieved 22 August 2015.
- La struttura, Trentino Volley. (in Italian)
- Segafredo Virtus Bologna. (in Italian)
- Germani Basket Brescia. (in Italian)
- Happy Casa Brindisi. (in Italian)
- Openjobmetis Varese. (in Italian)
- Umana Reyer Venezia. (in Italian)
- UNAHOTELS Reggio Emilia. (in Italian)
- Vanoli Cremona. (in Italian)
- seating capacity of PalaLottomatica
- Virtus Segafredo Arena: palazzo temporaneo da 8.970 posti
- "Gli Albi D'oro". Classifiche (in Italian). Legabasket.it. Retrieved 13 June 2017.
- Following an investigation for accounting and fiscal fraud, the Italian Basketball Federation revoked all the domestic titles won by the club during the 2011–12 and 2012–13 seasons.