Inaugural 3×3 Pro Basketball League Season 1 in Croatia to tip off in March 2023

  • Croatian Basketball Federation has granted exclusive recognition to ‘3×3 Pro Basketball League (3BL Croatia)’, making it Croatia’s only authorized professional 3×3 basketball league. 3BL Croatia is the only Professional Basketball League in the Croatia to have exclusive rights from Croatian Basketball Federation (HKS).
  • 3BL Croatia Season 1 will be held between 4thMarch to 30thApril, 2023 across Croatia.
  • With its ‘#RoadToOlympics’ tagline, 3BL Croatia aims to support HKS’s vision of Croatian 3×3 National Teams qualifying to the Olympics.
  • 3BL Croatia will provide valuable income and international exposure to players, besides an opportunity to gain crucial FIBA 3×3 ranking points.
  • Participation of top Croatian players in 3BL Croatia Season 1.

Split,11th October 2022: It’s official.Croatian Basketball Federation (HKS) and 3BL Croatia (3×3 Pro Basketball League) signed the exclusive contract to promote Professional 3×3 Basketball in Croatia. The dates for 3BL Croatia Season 1 will be 4th March to 30th April 2023 and will be held across the country.

These announcements were made earlier today at a press conference at Split. The press conference was hosted by Mr. Rohit Bakshi, Founder & Director of 3BL Croatia and Mrs. Prerna Sharma, Director of 3BL Croatia, alongside the Brand Ambassador of 3BL Croatia Mr. Toni Kukoč, Mr. Damjan Rudež, League Commissioner of 3BL Croatia, Mr. Antonio Kuzmanić, Deputy Mayor of Split, Mr. Josip Jerko Vranković, Secretary General of Croatian Basketball Federation, Mr. Mayank Jagwani, President Indo-Croatian Chamber of Commerce & Special Advisor to 3BL Croatia.

Starting off, Mr. Tony Kuko said, “I am very happy to see basketball flourish in my country with the introduction of 3×3 basketball via 3BL Croatia. Croatia has always been a dominant country in 5v5 basketball but now it’s time to make a mark in 3×3 basketball and bring home a medal at the Olympics. With the league being held all over the country, I am sure that local businesses and tourism will also flourish. This is a unique opportunity for brands and new ventures to be a apart of this extravagant league which specially caters to the youth of the nation. I’d like to wish everyone involved in this project, all the very best!”

“As a member of the Croatian Basketball Federation I have a duty to ensure that Croatian basketball makes massive strides which is why I am glad to introduce 3×3 basketball to this country with the launch of 3BL Croatia. 3BL have held 3 successful seasons in India and thanks to them, India have seen a huge rise in their FIBA 3×3 world ranking which is why I am convinced that 3BL Croatia can pave the road to the Olympics for the Croatian 3×3 basketball teams.” Said Mr. Josip Jerko Vranković.

Former Indiana Pacers, Minnesota Timberwolves and Orlando Magic power forward, Mr. Damjan Rudež was announced as the League Commissioner and had this to say, “After plying my trade in the NBA and various other international pro leagues, I am back in my home country to make a difference and this time as the League Commissioner of Croatia’s first and only 3×3 pro basketball league – 3BL Croatia. I am confident that this league will make a difference in Croatia’s preparations for the Olympics. It will also raise the standard of the game, quality of the players and give hope to streetballers that they too can represent their country at an Olympics. I am very excited to start to my new role!”

“We are extremely grateful for HKS to grant the exclusive rights to promote Professional 3×3 Basketball in Croatia.” Mr. Rohit Bakshi said. “3BL Croatia is committed to providing a valuable source of income to players, besides exposure to play alongside and against international talents. “3BL will act as a feeder system for Croatian national teams, especially those that will be participating at the 3×3 event at the Paris 2024 Olympics.”

“I am glad and thoroughly excited to be a part of this sporting endeavor in this beautiful country of Croatia. We are here to grow the sport of 3×3 basketball in Croatia which is why I would like to thank HKS for granting the exclusive rights to 3BL Croatia. Apart from the sport, I would like to call out to new start-ups and existing brands and businesses to come be a part of this new sporting revolution called 3BL Croatia.” Mrs. Prerna Sharma said.

Croatian Basketball players to participate in 3BL Croatia Season 1 ensures all of them gain high FIBA 3×3 ranking points. This raises the overall FIBA ranking of the Croatian National Team, thereby increasing Croatia’s chances of qualifying for the Olympics. Moreover, top ranked 3BL Croatia teams also get the chance to participate in FIBA 3×3 International Championships, which will raise the profile of Croatia’s basketball players.

Thanks to HKS’s recognition, 3BL Croatia becomes a key fixture in Croatia’s national basketball calendar that currently includes the Premier League, as well as cups and league across various genders and age categories. Participation in 3BL Croatia will help maintain the playing fitness of Croatia’s national team members and therefore translate to improved performances while representing the country in FIBA’s premier international events.

There will be 12 franchises (Men) vying for the Championship in the inaugural 3BL Croatia Season 1. The rosters for all teams will be announced after a player draft ceremony.

About 3BL Croatia

3BL Croatia is the exclusive rights holder for conducting professional 3×3 basketball league in Croatia officially approved and recognized by HKS, Croatian Basketball Federation. Founded by Mr. Rohit Bakshi in 2022, 3BL Croatia has a clear vision to grow and promote 3×3 culture and its potential throughout Croatia by organizing a Professional Circuit and Grassroots Programs.

3BL Croatia is the only exclusive provider for an opportunity to compete at FIBA 3×3’s international circuit such as Challengers and World Tours from Croatia directly.

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About Croatian Basketball Federation (HKS)

The Croatian Basketball Federation or HKS is the governing and controlling body of basketball in Croatia, and is responsible for the development and promotion of the sport at all levels. HKS has been involved in conducting camps, clinics, events, and training sessions at its academies for the development of basketball. HKS came into being in 1924 as Basketball Association of Yugoslavia and became an independent alliance known as Croatian Basketball Association in 1991. The success of the national team of the former country is reflected in the fact that players from Croatia won 27 out of 60 medals or 6 out of 12 golds at the Olympic Games. In each major win for Yugoslavia, 5 or more players hailed from with victories at the European and World Championships as well. 

In the 2019/20 season, a record number of Croatian players competed in the NBA, such as national team captain Bojan Bogdanović (Utah Jazz), Dario Šarić (Phoenix Suns), Mario Hezonja (Portland Trail Blazers), Ante Žižić (Cleveland Cavaliers), Ivica Zubac (LA Clippers), Dragan Bender (Milwaukee Bucks) and Luka Šamanić (San Antonio Spurs).

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About 3×3 Basketball

3×3 (pronounced “three-ex-three” in English) is considered the number one urban team sport discipline. From the first official event at the 2010 Youth Olympics Games, FIBA has had an ambitious vision for the game. The strategy is designed and executed holistically by a 3×3- dedicated team in FIBA’s headquarter since the inception of the business unit in 2010.

The business operations have been steadily growing year-on-year, including achievements like the inclusion of 3×3 in the Olympic Program as of 2020 and the official competitions being broadcast in over 100 countries.

FIBA 3×3 Video for more details: FIBA 3×3

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