Greek team Panathinaikos of Athens has been hit with a heavy penalty from Euroleague Basketball and its Independent Disciplinary Judge. The team has been hit for numerous violations during a recent Euroleague playoff game and the club has been slapped with a €100,000 total fine and a total of 4 games to be played behind closed doors with no spectators.
The violations took place during team’s recent Turkish Airlines Euroleague Playoffs quarterfinal game at OAKA arena against FC Barcelona Regal of Spain. The Independent Disciplinary Judge also took into account past incidents as well as “repeated and egregious infractions of the competition by-laws”. The judge ordered Panathinaikos to play three Turkish Airlines Euroleague games with no spectators while he also issued a €40,000 to the club.
Euroleague Basketball also decided to act and issued its own consequences in tandem with those of the Independent Disciplinary Judge. The continental Basketball body issued a €60,000 fine and added one extra game to be played behind closed doors. The total penalties incurred by Panathinaikos are €100,000 in fines and 4 games to be played with no crowd.
The action is especially heavy, but the Independent Disciplinary Judge also took into account a history of poor behavior from the fans of the Greek team. During the latest episode, fans used flares, firecrackers, and sirens, all of which are illegal in Euroleague games. The judge said that there is a long list of recurring problems at Panathinaikos home games during the last two seasons and that some of the behavior poses a physical threat to other spectators.
All the guest teams must assume that, whenever they come to Athens, they are very likely to face unsportsmanlike conduct from some home spectators as well as disturbance of all sorts and nature,” the judge said in his ruling.
The judge added that penalties would only get stronger is the violations persist in the future, while Panathinaikos has the right to appeal provided the appeal is lodged within 10 days. It is not the first time that Panathinaikos has fallen into trouble during the playoffs. The club was fined €30,000 after the third game for over attendance.