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Federation Focus: Iceland

09 July 2012
10 YEARS FIBA EUROPE

The Icelandic Basketball Association (KKI) was founded on 29 January 1961 and therefore celebrated its 50-year anniversary last year.

KKI consists of 62 clubs who are members of the Federation. KKI oversees and manages all national competitions, national teams as well as the development of basketball in Iceland. The KKI objectives are governing everything related to basketball, including national competition through all age levels, managing the national teams and promoting and developing basketball.

Basketball is the second most popular sport in Iceland. With particpants and organised clubs stretching across the island, KKI has the second largest competition schedule of all sports in Iceland each year, trailing in both categories behind football. The men's top division consists of 12 teams, while eight teams compete in the women's first division.

The Icelandic senior national teams have not reached the Final Round of a EuroBasket so far. In recent years, the men's and women's senior national teams have participated in Division B. The U16 and U18 teams have been very successful in regional competition, as they collected three gold medals at the 2004 Nordic Championships as well as two gold medals and two silver medals from 2009 to 2012, also in the Nordic Championships.

Petur Gudmundsson next to teammate Earvin Johnson
Petur Gudmundsson was the first Icelandic basketball player to play in the NBA. In the 1985-86 season he suited up for the Los Angeles Lakers, playing alongside Earvin 'Magic' Johnson.

 

Individually, several Icelandic players have stood out in the past. Petur Gudmundsson, a 2.18 m center, was one of the first European players to play in the NBA. Gudmundsson spent seven seasons in the league (1981-82, 1985-89), playing for the Los Angeles Lakers, Portland Trailblazers and San Antonio Spurs.

In recent years Jon Stefansson has been the nation's most known player internationally, having played with Napoli, Roma and Benetton in Italy. He then signed with NBA team Dallas Mavericks before heading to Dynamo St. Petersburg in Russia, the team he won EuroCup 2005 with. He is currently playing for CAI Zaragoza.

24-year-old Helena Sverrisdottir has been a dominant player for the Icelandic women's national team for years, despite her young age. She played at TCU in the NCAA for four years and broke the school record for most career points and assists. She recently re-signed with Slovakian side Good Angels Kosice.

KKI is proud of their former Federation President, Olafur Rafnsson, who is the current President of FIBA Europe. Elected in 2010, Mr. Rafnsson's position is the most significant office in the world of sport held by an Icelander.

 

Headquarters of the Icelandic Basketball Federation (KKI)
The headquarters of the Icelandic Basketball Federation are located in the Laugardalur complex in Reykjavik, which also hosts all the other national sports federations as well as the National Olympic and Sports Association of Iceland.

 

STATS & FACTS

Date of foundation: 29 August 1961
President: Hannes S. Jonsson
Secretary General: Fridrik Ingi Runarsson
Homepage: www.kki.is

Registered players (in total): 7,018
- U16 Men: 2,617
- U16 Women: 1,447
- Senior Men: 2,149
- Senior Women: 805
Registered clubs: 62

 

NATIONAL TEAM ACHIEVEMENTS

1988 European Promotion Cup for Men: 1st place
1990 European Promotion Cup for Men: 1st place
1994 European Promotion Cup for Men: 3rd place
1996 European Promotion Cup for Women: 1st place
1999 European Promotion Cup for Junior Men: 1st place
2002 European Promotion Cup for Women: 2nd place
2002 European Promotion Cup for Cadettes: 2nd place
2004 European Promotion Cup for Women: 1st place
2008 U16 European Championship Women Division C: 1st place

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