Results

Date R Home vs Away -
05/18 20:15 1 [3] Valur vs Tindastoll [4] 73-60
05/15 20:15 1 [4] Tindastoll vs Valur [3] 97-95
05/12 20:30 1 [3] Valur vs Tindastoll [4] 84-79
05/09 20:15 1 [4] Tindastoll vs Valur [3] 91-75
05/06 20:30 1 [3] Valur vs Tindastoll [4] 80-79
04/30 20:15 2 [4] Tindastoll vs Njardvik [1] 89-83
04/27 20:15 2 [1] Njardvik vs Tindastoll [4] 93-75
04/26 20:15 2 [2] Thor Thorl vs Valur [3] 65-82
04/24 20:15 2 [4] Tindastoll vs Njardvik [1] 116-107
04/23 20:15 2 [3] Valur vs Thor Thorl [2] 87-75
04/21 20:15 2 [1] Njardvik vs Tindastoll [4] 79-84
04/20 20:15 2 [2] Thor Thorl vs Valur [3] 84-89

Úrvalsdeild karla (English: Men's Premier League), also known as Subway deildin for sponsorship reasons, is the highest men's professional basketball competition among clubs in Iceland, where play determines the national champion. It is organized by the Icelandic Basketball Federation (Icelandic: Körfuknattleikssamband Íslands - KKÍ). The season consists of a home-and-away schedule of 22 games, followed by an eight-team playoff round. Quarterfinals, semifinals and finals series are best-of-five. The bottom clubs are relegated, and replaced by the top team from the regular-season phase and the four-team playoff round winner of the second-level First Division (Icelandic: 1. deild karla).

History

Creation and first years 1951-1959

The league was founded in 1951 as 1. deild karla (English: Men's 1st division) and its first season was played in April 1952 with five teams, Íþróttafélag Keflavíkurflugvallar (ÍKF), Íþróttafélag Reykjavíkur (ÍR), Íþróttafélag Stúdenta (ÍS), Gosi and Glímufélagið Ármann, participating. The team of ÍKF had the advantage of its close proximity with the US Naval Air Station at Keflavík International Airport and therefore could play competitive games with American players who had high school and college experience. They were furthermore coached by two American naval personnel, Gene Crowley and John Wahl. During the tournament, ÍKF won all four of its games with an average of 10.8 points.

For the first years decade the league was dominated by ÍKF (with 4 wins) and ÍR (with 3 wins); with ÍS finally breaking their dominance in 1959.

ÍR's dominance and the arrival of the Americans 1960-1980

From 1960 to 1964, ÍR, under the leadership of Helgi Jóhannsson, won five straight championships followed by KR winning four straight. From 1969 to 1977, ÍR added seven championships in 9 years. Its last victory in 1977 marked an end of an era and the rise of the Suðurnes rivals Keflavík and Njarðvík.

In September 1975, Jimmy Rogers became the first foreign born professional basketball player in Iceland when he signed a three-month contract with Ármann in preparations for their games against Honka Playboys in the FIBA European Cup Winners' Cup. Shortly later, KR signed fellow American Curtis Carter who immediately caught the attention of the fans and media with his powerful play and dunks. Together, they were credited for revolutionizing the Icelandic basketball scene. More Americans followed, including Rick Hockenos, Tim Dwyer and Danny Shouse.

Njarðvík's leadership

The next two decades, exactly from 1980–81 season to the 1997–98 season, Njarðvík (known as ÍKF until 1969) lead the league with 10 wins. In the same period, Keflavík won 4 titles and the KR won their eighth title.

Modern era

From the 2000–01 season, many teams have divided the lead of the league. In the 2005–06 season, the Njarðvík won their thirteenth title. In the following season, the 2006–07 season, the KR won their tenth title and one more year later, in the 2007–08 season, the Keflavík won their ninth title.