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EuroLeague Cancels Remainder of Season Due to Coronavirus Pandemic



Euroleague Predictions

Europe’s top basketball league canceled the remainder of its season Monday because of the coronavirus pandemic, saying health concerns had to be paramount despite numerous attempts to find ways to resume play.

The EuroLeague, which is composed of 18 teams across 10 European nations, had been suspended since March 12. League officials said they “explored every possible option” in trying to find a way to resume the season.

“Without a doubt, this is the most difficult decision we have had to take in our 20-year history,” Euroleague Basketball President and CEO Jordi Bertomeu said. “Due to reasons beyond our control, we have been forced to cut short the most successful and exciting season in European basketball history.”

The news came only two days after the NBA announced it, along with the National Basketball Players Association, has entered discussions with The Walt Disney Company on a single-site scenario for a resumption of play in Central Florida in late July.

Sports calendars around the globe have been ravaged since March because of the pandemic, with about 5.5 million people worldwide having been confirmed to have the coronavirus—and roughly 350,000 of those dying because of it, according to data culled by researchers at Johns Hopkins University.

The EuroLeague is generally considered the second-best basketball league in the world behind the NBA. Former University of Miami star Shane Larkin was the top scorer in the league this season, averaging 22.2 points per game for the Istanbul-based club Anadolu Efes.

Larkin made clear in an Instagram post over the weekend that he didn’t feel it was prudent for the EuroLeague season to continue.

“It is no secret that since postponing the season players haven’t had the ability to remain in top level shape,” Larkin wrote. “On top of the risk factor of possibly contracting the virus, the possibility of injuries are extremely high.

“Every team deserves and equal opportunity to win the EuroLeague but because of this pandemic many teams and players don’t have the chance to be as prepared as others,” he added. “I don’t think the EuroLeague champions should be decided by who has the ability to train and who doesn’t.”

Larkin’s team led the league with a 24-4 record this season but will not be recognized as champions, with that trophy simply not being awarded this season.

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News Source:

Euroleague Standings 2019-2020

Standings provided by Sofascore LiveScore

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Novibet is future ready with Microsoft Azure



novibet microsoft azure

Novibet is taking it to the next level with Microsoft Azure, banking on continuous innovation from Microsoft to support its development today and the company’s product visions for tomorrow.

In this rapidly evolving and highly competitive industry, GameTech operators like Novibet, must offer a fully featured Sportsbook and an attractive Casino offer, with improved personalization aiming to attract and retain players.

Novibet’s collaboration with Microsoft Azure is further strengthening its global market position and as the company’s Chief Technology Officer, Sotiris Haritos says: “Our target for moving to Microsoft Azure was twofold. First, we wanted to address the more pressing needs of adjusting to the growth we were experiencing, as at some point, it was clear that we had outgrown our infrastructure in our shared datacenter and secondly as we were looking at the future we wanted to have exactly this kind of flexibility we are currently enjoying and. To be able to spin out different environments in a completely automated way and have the infrastructure work for us and not the other way around. This is exactly what we have achieved with our move to Azure”.

Microsoft provided guidance and support for important stages of Novibet’s digital transformation, including migrating to the cloud and provided Novibet with technical guidance, governance and best practices by involving a team of Azure engineers to ensure a smooth transition. Matthew Scicluna, Director of Technical Operations in Malta was impressed with the support that his team got from Microsoft: “Azure Support offered a more personal approach, and it is easier for us to troubleshoot issues. When issues arise, escalating issues to Azure support really helped a lot.  Other cloud platforms, take a more general approach to support. Azure has a vast global presence that will help us scale globally in the future”.

Adrian Gatt, Microsoft’s iGaming Business Development Manager for Greece, Cyprus and Malta, points out the value of the win-win alliance with Novibet: “Our mission as a team working with our customers is to ensure we are seen as a partner that enables them to make an increased impact on the market they are operating in – we do not want to be seen as just a vendor and cost-center. Novibet’s access to, and collaboration with, our highly skilled Azure architects and engineers was critical to the success in delivering the project but also in building the customers trust in us. We do not want our customers to be dependent on us, but we want them to be independent with us. Our close working collaboration with Novibet is testament to this approach.”

Scalability is the name of the game for Novibet and Scicluna explains: “With Azure, we can scale up in a matter of minutes. When we identify that there is an influx of players, we can scale up with no issues using specific DevOps tooling and hence maximizing the usage of Azure. Making use of Azure technologies ensures that whatever our demand, the solution will scale to cater for our spikes in traffic”.

The transition to Azure last March, has proved to be a source of growth and Haritos is stressing the positive impact in the business: “What we’ve seen is exponential growth. The amount of growth that we have seen, is really significant. Furthermore, we have peace of mind in terms of platform stability with record KPIs and service level objectives. Also, the most important thing for our DevOps teams, is the visibility of the whole technology stack, something that we did not have before moving to Azure. So now we have a complete visibility of the network stack, of hardware resources, of practically everything. And that enabled us to be entirely aware of everything that is going on in our platform, giving us confidence for our day-to-day operations, as well as for our long term plans. Not to mention the optimization of our reaction time on different client demands. We are quicker to grow. We are quicker to scale up or scale out. Moving to Azure was definitely a big milestone for the company as a whole. It was very well received, and the benefits of this migration were acknowledged immediately by everyone. For our end users, everything was transparent and seamless, and at the end of the day, they were able to enjoy faster and more reliable services, which obviously contributes to the better user experience that we’re always aiming towards at Novibet”.

Sotiris Haritos briefly explains the challenges of the transition to Azure: “We were doing it live, in a sense that we had operations. We were transferring stuff and we kept everything transparent for our users. So, judging by the end result it was definitely a huge success story. The participation of Microsoft was really important and the local presence of the Microsoft team, their knowledge and their active participation were really pivotal for the success of this project”.

Novibet’s recent international distinctions for “Best In-House Product”, by EGR Operator Awards 2020 and “Best Mobile Operator App “, by SBC Awards 2020, are concrete proof of the operator’s technological superiority and the partnership with Microsoft Azure ensures further growth of the company.

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NBA will restart in Orlando – Schedule, Participants, Playoff Odds



The NBA season will restart in Orlando on the 31st July. The matches will take place within Disney World, in Orlando, Florida.

Pro basketball in the USA is officially on its way back. This season will be no summer camps, but summer champs.

It was announced that operations will resume and lead to a conclusion of the 2019-2020 NBA season.

The NBA season was shut down in mid-March with the rest of the sporting world due to the coronavirus pandemic. But recently, the league’s owners and players association approved a plan to continue.

The participants

22 of 30 teams —the 16 current playoff teams and the 6 teams within six games of their conference’s No. 8 seed— return to action for a brief, eight-game finish to the regular season, plus a potential play-in tournament to determine the last seed in each conference.

Where will the NBA playoffs take place?

All the games are scheduled to be played at the ESPN World Wide of Sports Complex, located within Disney World in Orlando, Florida. Training camps will start about a month earlier and the NBA season will officially return on July 31.

NBA restart

Complete schedule

Let’s take a look at the full overview announcede for the restart of the 2019-2020 NBA season, which includes the complete schedule, participants, draft lottery information and more.

  • June 22: Coronavirus testing begins
  • June 30: Training camp begins in home markets
  • July 7: All teams travel to Orlando
  • July 31: NBA season resumes
  • August 25: NBA Draft Lottery 2020
  • October 15: NBA Draft 2020
  • October 18: Free agency begins
  • November 10: Training camps for 2020-21 campaign begin
  • December 1: 2020-21 NBA season starts

The restart of the 2020 NBA regular season will be a 16-day affair beginning on July 31, with 5-6 games played per day during that span and each team playing one back-to-back.

There is a potential of a play-in tournament for the No. 8 seed in each conference as well, which would be triggered by the No. 9 team finishing within four games of the No. 8 seed. Those teams would match up in a series where the stronger record side would need just one win to secure their position in the 2020 NBA Playoffs, while the lower team would have to win two games in a row to usurp the spot.

NBA Restart 2020 Participants And Regular Season Schedule

Each of the 22 teams involved in the NBA’s abbreviated return will play eight seeding games to help finalize the 2020 NBA Playoff bracket.

Each team is scheduled to play the opponents that it would have faced prior to the shutdown, although because eight franchises weren’t invited to Orlando, teams that had a matchup with one of the eliminated squads on the docket will instead move on to the next in line.

Four teams—the Trail Blazers, Heat, Magic and Lakers—will not be able to reach eight games this way, so it is presumed that they will match up with one another to reach that number. Although it has not been officially announced, here is how the 2020 NBA season schedule should look for the seeding games based on the league’s plan:

  • BOSTON CELTICS vs. Bucks, Wizards, Raptors, Nets, Wizards, Blazers, Grizzlies, Heat
  • BROOKLYN NETS vs. Clippers, Kings, Wizards, Celtics, Magic, Clippers, Magic, Blazers
  • DALLAS MAVERICKS vs. Suns, Clippers, Kings, Blazers, Suns, Rockets, Jazz, Bucks
  • DENVER NUGGETS vs. Spurs, Lakers, Clippers, Thunder, Raptors, Heat, Spurs, Thunder
  • HOUSTON ROCKETS vs. Lakers, Blazers, Kings, Bucks, Mavericks, Pacers, 76ers, Raptors
  • INDIANA PACERS vs. 76ers, Heat, Suns, Magic, Rockets, Kings, Clippers, Lakers
  • LOS ANGELES CLIPPERS vs. Nets, Pelicans, Mavericks, Nuggets, Suns, Nets, Pacers, Thunder
  • LOS ANGELES LAKERS vs. Rockets, Nuggets, Jazz, Jazz, Raptors, Pacers, Trail Blazers,* Heat or Magic*
  • MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES vs. Blazers, Jazz, Spurs, Thunder, Bucks, Pelicans, Pelicans, Celtics
  • MIAMI HEAT vs. Bucks, Pacers, Thunder, Nuggets, Suns, Celtics, Raptors, *Lakers or Trail Blazers*
  • MILWAUKEE BUCKS vs. Celtics, Heat, Grizzlies, Wizards, Rockets, Wizards, Mavericks, Raptors
  • NEW ORLEANS PELICANS vs. Kings, Jazz, Clippers, Spurs, Grizzlies, Kings, Grizzlies, Magic
  • OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER vs. Jazz, Wizards, Grizzlies, Nuggets, Heat, Nuggets, Suns, Clippers
  • ORLANDO MAGIC vs. Pacers, Kings, Nets, Nets, Pelicans, 76ers, Raptors, Lakers or Trail Blazers*
  • PHILADELPHIA 76ERS vs. Pacers, Wizards, Raptors, Blazers, Suns, Rockets, Magic, Spurs
  • PHOENIX SUNS vs. Mavericks, Pacers, Clippers, Mavericks, 76ers, Wizards, Heat, Thunder
  • PORTLAND TRAIL BLAZERS vs. Grizzlies, Rockets, Mavericks, 76ers, Celtics, Nets, Lakers,* Heat or Magic*
  • SACRAMENTO KINGS vs. Pelicans, Nets, Mavericks, Rockets, Magic, Pelicans, Pacers, Spurs
  • SAN ANTONIO SPURS vs. Nuggets, Grizzlies, Pelicans, Jazz, Jazz, Nuggets, Kings, 76ers
  • TORONTO RAPTORS vs. 76ers, Celtics, Nuggets, Lakers, Bucks, Rockets, Heat, Magic
  • UTAH JAZZ vs. Thunder, Pelicans, Grizzlies, Lakers, Lakers, Spurs, Spurs, Mavericks
  • WASHINGTON WIZARDS vs. Celtics, Thunder, 76ers, Nets, Bucks, Celtics, Suns, Bucks

Play-offs and NBA Finals 2020

All series will still be best-of-sevens, but the league plans to condense the postseason as much as possible by moving up start dates for each round based on when the previous one ends.

The Finals will also be shortened down to games every other day, which means it will take less than two weeks—Game 7 would take place no later than October 12—to determine a champion after the conference finals wrap up.

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News Source: Forbes

NBA Standings 2019-2020

Standings provided by SofaScore LiveScore

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Fußball kehrt zurück!



Bundesliga live streaming

Or just… Football Returns!

After what has felt like an eternity without football, it’s time for the big return! The German government has given the green light for the Bundesliga to resume on Saturday the 16th May, with bet365 live streaming all the action* (exclusions listed below).

Last week, the DFB has announced an action packed relaunch weekend with some tasty fixtures.

The standout tie undoubtedly comes in the form of the Revierderby where Borussia Dortmund host Schalke in a game that has always delivered some magic.

Dortmund sit 2nd in the table and will be hoping that their form prior to the break continues after winning four straight games and only conceding once.

That said, form often goes out of the window in a derby and this meeting has seen both teams score in six of the last nine matches. bet365 has priced this up at 4/5 to make it seven from ten, which could interest many punters with both teams lacking match fitness.

Just to inform or remind you, and this is agreed for all leagues, the teams are allowed 5 substitutions instead of 3 in a decision aiming to minimise injuries. However, managers will have to use them in 3 occasions to avoid time wasting.

Elsewhere in the league, Bayern Munich travel to Union Berlin on Sunday after once again stamping their authority on the division by winning nine straight games and going four points clear at the top.

This run has seen formerly interim boss Hansi Flick given the job on a permanent basis with many believing it’s only a matter of time before Bayern are crowned champions for a staggering 30th time.

Full fixtures from the opening weekend can be found below:

Saturday 16th May (all times are BST):

Borussia Dortmund vs FC Schalke 04 – 14:30

FC Augsburg vs VfL Wolfsburg – 14:30

Fortuna Düsseldorf vs SC Paderborn 07 – 14:30

RB Leipzig vs SC Freiburg – 14:30

1899 Hoffenheim vs Hertha Berlin – 14:30

Eintracht Frankfurt vs Borussia Mönchengladbach – 17:30

Sunday 17th May

  1. FC Köln vs Mainz 05 – 14:30
  2. FC Union Berlin vs Bayern Munich – 17:00

Monday 18th May

Werder Bremen vs Bayer 04 Leverkusen – 19:30

Bundesliga live streaming

bet365 will be streaming all fixtures from the Bundesliga as European football comes back onto the scene. Geo-restrictions apply (listed below) and a funded account or bet placement in prior 24 hours is required to access and watch.

*Excluded countries include Austria, Germany, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg & Switzerland

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