Unicaja win the 2024 Basketball Champions League

22 Apr 2024

unicaja bcl winners
  • Unicaja became the sixth team to ever win the Basketball Champions League (50% are from Spain). 
  • Lenovo Tenerife became the first team to lose two BCL Finals. 
  • Unicaja's perimeter defense and three-point form secured the Andalusians' first continental title. 
  • Kendrick Perry contributed with 17 points in 19 minutes.

Unicaja do what it takes to bring first BCL Trophy home

It was a hard-fought Spanish derby in the Basketball Champions League final in Belgrade between Lenovo Tenerife and Unicaja, who add their name to the likes of Lenovo Tenerife, Telekom Baskets Bonn, Hereda San Pablo Burgos, Segafredo Virtus Bologna and AEK as the sixth team to triumph in the BCL.

Ibon Navarro's side, the best defense in the competition, tried to build up a cushion to ease to the win, but two-time champions Lenovo Tenerife ensured to do just enough to keep in sight of Unicaja.

The Andalusians' defense deserves credit for keeping Marcelinho Huertas to a meager 5/13 from the field, and while Shermadini converted all of his 5 shots for another 16-point night on 23 Efficiency, the two-time champions could not come close enough to fuel a decisive comeback.

Kendrick Perry taking matters into his own hands

Kendrick Perry was heartbroken when, during last season's BCL Final Four, he missed the last-second three-pointer to send Unicaja to the Basketball Champions League Final. This time around, he was determined to go all the way.

17 points in under 20 minutes coming off the bench, including a crucial 5-0 run made of a three, a steal, and a layup, ensured Unicaja were able to fend off Lenovo Tenerife's comeback attempts. The Florida native had his delayed redemption just one year after heartbreak at the José María Martín Carpena.

Disappointment for Lenovo Tenerife's Big Three

BCL MVP Marcelinho Huertas, in-form Kyle Guy and Giorgi Shermadini combined for 48 points but that still was not enough for the Canarios. Tenerife will have to wait one more season to become the single team with the most BCL trophies in their cabinet.