Homenetmen Beirut Basketball Club standing for “Armenian General Athletic Union and Scouts”) is the basketball department of Homenetmen, a Lebanese-Armenian multi-sports club based in Beirut. The club was established in 1924 in Beirut and is part of the worldwide pan-Armenian Homenetmen association. Also known simply as Homenetmen, Homenetmen Basketball Club is the professional basketball team of the major Beirut based multi club Homenetmen.
The basketball team was founded in 1924 and is one of the oldest in the league and won its first Lebanese League Championship in 2018, with coach Joe Moujaes in an epic final against Riyadi Club.
Homenetmen Beirut has a long-running program for basketball in the Lebanese Basketball League for both men and women and has been one of the pioneers of the sports from the day of its foundation in 1918.
2003-2013 : Second Division Years
In 2003, Homenetmen was relegated from the Lebanese Basketball first division. The club played for the first time in history in the Lebanese basketball’s second division. After playing for one season in the second division the club qualified back to the first division in 2004 but was unable to play due to financial crisis. For years, the club fought for a place in the play-offs of the second division but ended up getting knocked out. In 2012, Homenetmen reached the playoff semifinals but lost the series.
In 2013, Homenetmen became the champions of the second division and got qualified to the Lebanese Basketball first division.
2013-Present : Back to First Division
Homenetmen ended a 10-year wait for top-flight promotion to the Lebanese basketball’s first division as they claimed the final series comfortably 3-0 after a 58-51 victory over Tadamon Zouk.
The Armenian side would play in the first division for the first time since the 2004-2005 season. Homenetmen had already, in their squad, several players accustomed to the top division. One of those players was Ghatas, who played for Sagesse for eight years, as well as Champville.
With the start of the 2013-2014 season, Homenetmen signed Terrence Leather, Justin Gray, Hayg Gyokchyan, and even the veteran player Joe Vogel. Homenetmenagan and fan favorite youngster Sevag Ketendjian was named captain of the team.
The season started poorly with just 2 wins out of 6 games which led Homenetmen to fire their Serbian coach Nenad Krzic, released Justin Gray from the team and signed the American high-flier Dion Dixon and Bosnian coach Alan Abaz who guided the team to the first division the previous year. Under Abaz, the team found its winning form with a winning record of 8-1 and without losing a game at home, defeating reigning champions Riyadi 70-63 at home and beating Sagesse 68-63 away. The club finished the regular season 6th and faced Amchit in the playoffs. The series ended 3-0 for Amchit.
Before the start of the 2014-2015 season and due to problems with the Basketball Committee and with the President Guy Manoukian, Homenetmen’s Central Committee formed a new Basketball committee, the team signed Mike Fraiser, Jimmy Salem, Mattiew Dib and the ex-NBA player Rashad McCants under the guidance of coach Joe Moujaes, with Sevag Ketenjian remaining captain of the team.
Homenetmen finished the regular season 7th and faced Sagesse in the playoffs. During the playoffs, Homenetmen would re-sign Dion Dixon and release Rashad McCants. Sagesse won the series 3-1 with a one-point win in the last match.
The 2014-2015 season was horrible to the Homenetmen family because of the poor results. The Homenetmen Central Committee dissolved the newly assigned Basketball Committee and reassigned the former Basketball Committee headed by the President Mr Guy Manoukian.
Before the start of the 2015-2016 season, Homenetmen signed Bilal Tabbara, Nadim Souaid, Badih Souaid, DeWayne Jackson, Justin Tubbs, Norvel Pelle, and even adding the Lebanese superstar Ahmad Ibrahim. Sevag Ketendjian remained captain of the team for the third year in a row. Homenetmen started the league with a 3-0 winning streak defeating Champville, Byblos and Louaize but lost to Riyadi. Homenetmen was down 2-0 against hoops in the quarter finals where they released Jusin Tubbs and signed Kevin Galloway. They managed to win the series 2-3. They reached their objective and qualified for the Semi-Finals for the first time in the history of LBL, but got knocked out of semi Finals by Al Riyadi Club 2-4.
Homenetmen also played the Lebanese Cup that yearand was knocked out after losing in the semifinals against Tadamon Zouk
Before the start of 2016-2017 season Homenetmen signed Nadim Hawi, Karam Mechref, Elie Chamoun, Nadim Souaid, Paolo Bedikian, Daniel Baghdadian, Simon Ohanian, Hayk Gyokchyan, and the Lebanese Legend Fadi El Khatib, with the three foreigners DeWayne Jackson, Ater Majok and Kevin Galloway. And appointed Joe Moujaes as head coach with Sevag Ketenjian remaining captain of the team. Homenetmen finished the season top of the league with 17 wins and 1 loss and routing the second round with 6 wins. For the 4th consecutive year Homenetmen entered the playoff, won 3-0 over Champville SC, Homenetmen went to the semi-finals of the playoffs against Mouttahed, the series ended 3-1. In the Finals Homenetmen faced Al Riyadi and were defeated 2–4. After leading the series 2-0 when their key player Fadi Al Khatib got injured.
In 2017-2018 Homenetmen started the season with the signings of NBA superstar Sam Young, Walter Hodge Tunisian star Makram Ben Romdhane, Karim Zeinoun and the Egyptian veteran Ismail Ahmed Abdelmoneim and releasing Nadim Souaid and Fadi El Khatib.
Homenetmen won the Henri Chalhoub Tournament on October 1st 2017, hosted by the newly promoted First Division club Beirut by winning 58-50.
Homenetmen won the Arab Club Championship against ASS Sale 99-98 in a packed stadium with more than 6000 fans.
Homenetmen won the Lebanese Cup by beating Al Riyadi 77-70, on May 2, 2018.
Homenetmen ended the regular season with a 21-5 score and secured the Homecourt advantage. Homenetmen swept the series 3-0 against Louazie and faced Sagesse in the semis-finals of the playoffs. Homenetmen crushed Sagesse 4-0 and went to face Al Riyadi in the Finals.
The Lebanese Basketball League (LBL) has long been ruled by the two clubs – Sagesse and Al Riyadi – but this time around, it was Homenetmen Beirut BC that rose to the top and claimed their first LBL title in the club’s history. In a tense seven-game series that went the full distance, Homenetmen prevailed in the final game, 74-59. Foreign players Sam Young, Walter Hodge and Makram Ben Romdhane led the way for Homenetmen as they snapped Al Riyadi’s four-years stranglehold on the LBL throne while also avenging their Finals defeat to the same team the previous year.
Homenetmen was crowned the Lebanese Basketball League Champions for 2017-2018.
Among the well-known top class players that have played with the club over the years are: Justin Gray, Dion Dixon, Terrence Leather, Joe Vogel, Rashad McCants, Fadi El Khatib, Ahmad Ibrahim, Hovsep Loutkajian, Raymond Karvathe, Yaacouba Tor, Bassem Balaa, Michael Fraser, Kevin Gallaway, Joe Ghattas, DeWayne Jackson, Ater Majok, Norvel Pelle, Nadim Souaid, Sam Thompson, Justin Tubbs, Mike Taylor.