Hearty congratulations are in order for AS Monaco and UNICS Kazan, the two clubs that have reached the 2021 7DAYS EuroCup Finals and therefore have earned the right to play in the 2021-22 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague.
Under new rules put in place but never activated before the last, pandemic-shortened season, both EuroCup finalists would become eligible to join the EuroLeague the following season only if the previous EuroCup team there did not reach the EuroLeague Playoffs.
Zenit St Petersburg clinched the last spot in the EuroLeague Playoffs with a resounding victory over Panathinaikos OPAP Athens on Monday and denied Valencia Basket the same distinction. Since Valencia was the last 7DAYS EuroCup champion, that meant that both finalists in the EuroCup this season would gain eligibility for the EuroLeague next season.
Monaco made history by completing a two-game semifinal sweep of Herbalife Gran Canaria last Friday, ensuring it would be eligible to make its EuroLeague debut. It is a remarkable feat for the club from the Principality of Monaco, which is playing in just its third EuroCup season, one of which was cut short by the pandemic before Monaco was to play in the quarterfinals.
UNICS beat Virtus Segafredo Bologna 100-107 on the road in their deciding semifinals Game 3 on Wednesday, gaining eligibility to play in its fourth EuroLeague campaign after having done so in the 2011-12, 2014-15 and 2016-17 seasons. Its best season was the first of those three, when it reached the playoffs before falling to FC Barcelona in three games of the best-of-five playoffs.