África - Liga de Basquetebol - Qualificação

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The Basketball Africa League (BAL) is Africa's premier men's basketball league. The league consists of twelve teams, each qualified through their domestic competition, similar to the format of the UEFA Champions League. The league is a joint effort between the National Basketball Association (NBA) and International Basketball Federation (FIBA) with sponsorship from Nike, Air Jordan and Pepsi.

Its inaugural season started with the qualifying rounds in October 2019 and the regular season in May 2021. The competition replaces FIBA's Africa Basketball League as the continent's top-tier league.

BAL president, Amadou Gallo Fall, announced at the 2020 NBA All-Star Game Africa Luncheon in Chicago, that the season will tip off on 13 March. At the event, Nike and Jordan unveiled the official jerseys for the twelve teams (six of the teams will be outfitted by Nike and the other six by Jordan). The BAL also launched the league's official website and social media accounts.

The inaugural season was postponed on 3 March 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. On 29 March 2021, it was announced that the inaugural season would start on 16 May 2021, and would end on 30 May.

History

On 16 February 2019 the National Basketball Association and FIBA announced plans to establish a continental professional basketball league. During a press conference at the 2019 NBA All-Star weekend, NBA commissioner Adam Silver elaborated on plans to establish the league. He stated that the league will feature 12 teams after qualification tournaments in late 2019. The countries that could possibly host a team include; Angola, Egypt, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa and Tunisia. Silver also hinted at the involvement of former U.S. president Barack Obama in an unspecified role. In May 2019, Amadou Gallo Fall was assigned by the NBA as the first president of the BAL. In September 2019, BAL announced the venues and cities for the inaugural season, which included a Final Four played in Kigali Arena in Kigali, Rwanda.

On 15 October 2019, the qualifying tournaments for the inaugural season began, with teams from 32 African countries participating. On 3 March 2020, the BAL announced that it was postponing its season due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A new date would not be settled until 29 March 2021, when the inaugural season was announced to start on 16 May 2021, in the Kigali Arena in Kigali, Rwanda. The season was held in a bubble with limited people in the stands. On 30 May 2021, Zamalek from Egypt won the first-ever BAL championship after beating US Monastir in the inaugural Finals.

On 27 July 2021, former President Barack Obama joined NBA Africa as a strategic partner. The former president of the United States (2009–2017), avid basketball player, will also have a minority stake.