FC Barcelona has qualified for the playoffs! Barca is the third team to formally secure a spot among this season's top eight teams after it defeated Panathinaikos Athens 74-88 on the road in Round 30. Its 20-10 record and potential tie-break advantage against all possible opponents allowed Barca to clinch its playoff berth with four games remaining in the 2022-23 Turkish Airlines EuroLeague Regular Season.
Of course, the next goal for Barca - and the other two qualified teams, Olympiacos Piraeus and Real Madrid - is to secure home-court advantage for the quarterfinals series. Barca made the most out of it last season, downing FC Bayern Munich at home in Game 5 of their series to reach the Final Four. Barca will likely need more victories to get this important goal and be able to host Games 1 and 2 of the playoffs at Palau Blaugrana.
Road to playoffs
Barca started the regular season on the wrong foot with an 80-90 home loss against Olympiacos. The team, however, went on to win its next five home games and also grabbed quality road victories at FC Bayern Munich, Maccabi Playtika Tel Aviv and ALBA Berlin to go to 8-3 in the standings. A couple of 1-point losses against LDLC ASVEL Villeurbanne and Valencia Basket did not undermine Barca's continuity, as the team stayed strong at Palau Blaugrana and kept adding road wins against Crvena Zvezda Meridianbet Belgrade, ASVEL and Cazoo Baskonia Vitoria-Gasteiz.
A road loss at Real Madrid in the second EuroLeague 'Clasico' of the season marked another turning point, as Barca bounced back with a five-game winning streak - four of them at Palau Blaugrana and the other at Virtus Segafredo Bologna. Barca only registered consecutive losses once this season, against Olympiacos and Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul in Rounds 26 and 27. It then bounced back with a big home win against Zvezda and clinched its playoff spot with the aforementioned road victory at OAKA Altion. Barca has an 11-4 home record and is 9-6 on the road this season.
Barca enters the playoffs with an experienced roster, featuring four EuroLeague champions. Nikola Kalinic and Jan Vesely won the EuroLeague title together with Fenerbahce Beko Istanbul in 2017. Cory Higgins helped CSKA Moscow lift the trophy twice, in 2016 and 2019, and Sertac Sanli claimed the EuroLeague crown with Anadolu Efes Istanbul in 2021.
Nikola Mirotic has played five in playoff series: with Real Madrid in 2011, 2013 and 2014, and with Barca the last two seasons and his team has advanced to the Final Four in all of them. Alex Abrines, Kyle Kuric, Nico Laprovittola, Rokas Jokubaitis and Sergi Martinez have also been to the Final Four with Barca. Tomas Satoransky lost two playoff series with Barca, against Olympiacos in 2015 and Lokomotiv Kuban Krasnodar in 2016.
Since the playoffs returned to the EuroLeague for the 2004-05 season, Barca has played more games in that stage than any other team: 57, with a 31-26 record. In that time, Barca has managed to qualify for the Final Four eight times: 2006, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2021 and 2022. No other team has lost more playoff series (6): two of them with the home-court advantage (2011, 2015) and four without it (2007, 2008, 2016 and 2019).
The last two years, Barca lost a home game at Palau Blaugrana and then stole a road victory to regain the home-court advantage and win the series at Palau Blaugrana. In 2021, Barca downed Zenit 3-2 after a 79-53 home victory in Game 5. Last season, Barca also needed all five games to beat Bayern 81-72 in the decider and get to the Final Four. Since the Final Four format was adopted in 1988, Barca has been to 16 Final Fours and won the title in 2003 and 2010.