Ural Great BC

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49 Kuibyshev St., Perm, 614016, Russia
phone/fax: (3422) 12-97-97, 12-91-44, 90-40-29, 90-40-30

Ural Great - Club History
Ural Great Games Support Fund was founded in Perm on June 16, 1995. Its founders were the Perm basketball players who took part in the regional championship Sergey Kushchenko, Vladislav Isaev, Alexander Antonov and Vladimir Martynenko. They were supported by the Basketball Federation of the Perm Region and its President Leonid Likhachev.

In 1995/96 the Club was launched on the basis of the Technical University team. In its first season the team led by Vladimir Serebryakov ranked the 24th in the Russian Championship among the teams of the High League.

New head coach Vyacheslav Borodin joined the team in 1996/97. That season Ural Great took the second place in the Division B of the Russian High League and qualified to Russian Super League.

In 1997/98 Pavel Googe came to be the head coach of Ural Great. Alexander Chadov, Andrei Sheiko and Alexei Pegushin who once started in Perm but then played basketball outside Perm region came back to Ural Great. Coached by Googe the team became the Champion of the East Division of Super League and finished the 10th in Russian Championship.

Ural Great Junior - the Children's Sports Support Fund was launched in Perm in summer 1998. It was already in September that almost 6 thousand children started playing basketball there. The Fund was the first in Russia to organize an interregional seminar for coaches of junior basketball teams. The most famous basketball professionals of Russia Eugene Gomelsky, Ivan Edeshko and Valentina Bashkirova took part in the seminar. Ural Great Junior was the first to organize big children's basketball tournament where the Russian Passerelle team was among the participants. Since then such seminars and tournaments became international. Ural Great Junior team made its debut in the First League of the Russian Championship.

1998/99 - for the first time in the history of Perm basketball Ural Great qualified into play-offs of the Russian Championship, it competed to get the bronze award but finally finished the 4th in the country. Ural Great was the first team from Perm to get the right to represent Russia in the international tournament - European Korac Cup. On April 11, 1999 Perm hosted the most prestigious game of the season "All Stars of Russia - 99". It was successfully carried out on the biggest and most modern basketball court in Russia opened in autumn 1998. Molot Sports Hall accommodates 7 thousand spectators. Thus, by 1999 Ural Great managed to create an organizational infrastructure comprising all the components from training young basketball players to the team of professionals. It was recognized by the Russian experts as the most effective basketball structure in the country. According to the results of the 1998/99 season Russian Basketball Federation called the General Director of Ural Great Basketball Club Sergey Kushchenko "Man of the Year" in Russian basketball and elected him to the Executive Committee of the Russian Basketball Federation. 1999 was marked by further development of Ural Great. Perm Regional Administration offered its support to the club and Vice Governor Vladimir Morozov became the President of Ural Great Games Support Fund.

August 28, 1999 - Non-commercial partnership Ural Great Berezniki was founded. A new team was organized on its basis. In 2000/2001 this team became the bronze medallist of the High League of Russian Championship.

1999/2000 - Two people world famous in basketball came to coach Ural Great - Sergei Belov and Valdemaras Chomicius, both Olympic Champions. Igor Kurashov, center of the Russian National Team and silver medallist of the World Championship in Greece and Tomas Pacesas, playmaker of the Lithuanian National Team and bronze medallist of the Olympic Games in Atlanta joined the team roster. Center from CSKA Alexander Bashminov also signed the contract with Ural Great. American players - the best shooter of the Dutch Championship Donnell Tomas, NBA player Sean Higgins and NBA star of the 80es Roy Tarply strengthened the Perm team, too. Four players of Ural Great - Alexander Bashminov, Vyacheslav Shushakov, Alexei Pegushin and Andrei Sheiko participated in the World Students' Games in Palma de Mallorca, Spain. In May 2000 Ural Great won silver medals of the National Championship and received an invitation to take part in the regular NEBL Championship. Center Alexander Bashminov and guard Sergei Chikalkin were in the starting lineup of Russian National Team at the Olympic Games - 2000 in Sydney.

2000/2001 - Ural Great again strengthened the team with top level players. The club signed Mikhail Mikhailov from Real Madrid; Sergei Panov, Champion of Russia, from CSKA, Moscow; Rytis Vaisvila, Olympic Games in Atlanta bronze medallist with Lithuanian National Team and experienced NBA player Willie Burton. 2000/2001 appeared to be the most successful season in the Perm history of sports games clubs. In April 2001 Ural Great became the Champion of the Northern European Basketball League (Perm hosted Final Four of this tournament). In June the team became the Champion of Russia having won the semi-finals of the National Championship against CSKA, Moscow 2-0 and the finals against UNICS, Kazan 3-0. As the best team in the National Championship Ural Great was invited to participate in the most prestigious club tournament of the continent - ULEB Euroleague. The decision to host the election conference of the Russian Basketball Federation in December 2000 was a great honour for Perm. According to the decision made by the delegates of the conference, General Director of the Club Sergey Kushchenko was elected to be the Vice President of the Russian Basketball Federation.

2001/2002 - Ural Great signed two players of the Russian NT: Vassili Karasev and Ruslan Avleev, American forward Anthony Bowie and Greek guard Panagiotis Liadellis. One of the best national basketball players Valeri Daineko strengthened the team's roster as well. In the NEBL competition the team became the second after Lietuvos Ritas from Vilnius, Lithuania. Participation in the Euroleague also proved to be successful as Ural Great qualified to Top 16 of this main European basketball competition. In the Russian championship playoffs Ural Great won Spartak Saint Petersburg 2-0 in the quarter finals, Avtodor Saratov 2-0 in the semis and Unics Kazan 3-1 in the finals thus repeating last season success and becoming Russian champion for the second time in a row. According to the basketball experts, 2001/02 season Ural Great ranked the 14th among the best basketball clubs of Europe. FIBA honoured the Club by a decision to organize games of the Russian NT vs. national teams of Portugal and Slovenia in Perm.

Autumn 2001 - Ural Great players Alexander Bashminov, Mikhail Mikhailov, Vassili Karasev, Ruslan Avleev, Sergei Panov and forward of the Italian Benetton Sergei Chikalkin, ex-player of the Urals team till 2001, made up the roster of the Russian national team. In summer 2002 Vassili Karasev, Sergei Panov, Ruslan Avleev and Alexander Bashminov were called to the NT to take part in the World Basketball Championship in Indianapolis, US.

The end of 2001/02 marked fundamental changes in Perm basketball. The founder and President of Ural Great Sergey Kushchenko accepted the offer to become the head of BC CSKA Moscow. Pavel Lyakh became the chief executive officer of the Club.

Marketing and advertising policy being pursued by the Club's management for six years has paid off. Ural Great is the only Russian basketball team whose home games attract 7500 fans regularly. The team's both international and domestic success develop public interest to the Game on the whole. More than 10 000 people aged from 11 to 60 years old apply to participate in the Street basket being organized in summer and autumn.

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