The faction of the Nigeria Basketball Federation, led by Musa Kida, says it has commenced registration of clubs and players for the 2018 Total Divisions 1 and 2 league season.
This follows the recent agreement signed between NBBF and Total E&P Nigeria Ltd, for sponsorship of the National Divisions 1 and 2 Men’s Basketball Leagues totaling 60million naira. It also continues the lingering crisis threatening the future of the game in the country as the Tijani Umar faction have already announced another tourney for the coming weeks.
The release declared that interested Clubs are to obtain and complete the League Registration Forms from their various State Basketball Associations, the Secretariat of the Nigeria Basketball Federation or online.
Under this new arrangement in NBBF/Total Division 2, each of the 36 States and the FCT, Abuja, will hold State Preliminary competitions to determine the 2 teams to represent the state at the zonal level.
The Vice President of the NBBF, Babs Ogunade said the new league format which is expected to accommodate more teams is a clear departure from what was obtainable under the former board where few teams gathered to play about 4 or 5 matches within a one week period.
“In recent years, the National Men’s Division 1 and 2 leagues could best be described as a jamboree and a waste of time and resources. Teams pay registration fees and other expenses with nothing at stake except promotion ticket.”
According to the directives from the NBBF, the format of competitions at the state level will depend on the number of teams registered at the state level as 74 teams are expected to qualify for the Divisions 2 playoffs.
Explaining the format, Ogunade said, “The Zonal Champions and Runners up will qualify for the Conference Final 6. In this case, there will be 2 Conferences. The top 2 Teams from the Northwest, North Central and the North East Divisions make up the Savannah Conference, while the Top 2 Teams from the South East, South West and South South make up the Atlantic Conference”.
The Conference Champions, along with the 2nd, 3rd and 4th place Teams from each Conference will qualify for the Final 8 to be held at a venue to be decided by the NBBF from where the National Champions and Runner Up will emerge.
The top 4 teams at the Final 8 will qualify for the 2019 season of the National Division 1 League .
All the competitions will take place within a time frame to be decided based on the registration received from the teams and states.
The Total National Division 1 Men’s League will also adopt the same format as the Division 2 League with the teams presently in Division 1 retaining their status and the teams increased to 16 teams.
Total will provide playing kits for all Zonal finalists.
Registration and submission of completed forms closes on 10th of May, 2018.