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NBA owners voted unanimously to change the format of the Finals. The NBA Finals will return to a 2-2-1-1-1 format and it’s effective immediately.
This is the first time that the format for the Finals has changed since the NBA went to a 2-3-2 format in 1995. NBA Commissioner David Stern said that the reason for the 2-3-2 format was financial, according to Sporting News. The NBA’s competition committee recommended the change to a 2-2-1-1-1 format. The new format will allow an extra day off between game six and seven.
“The Competition Committee felt strongly that a consistent format should be used for each round of our playoffs,” President of Basketball Operations Rod Thorn said in a press release. “With improvements in team air travel and technology, the reasons the 2-3-2 format made sense for us in the past largely do not exist anymore, so creating consistency became the priority.”
According to the AFP, early rounds of the playoffs used the 2-2-1-1-1 format from 1957 to 1984. The move to the 2-2-1-1-1 format was made because it was unfair that the team with home court advantage had to play five games on the road if the series was tied after game four. With the format change, travel shouldn’t be that much of a burden anymore. This should be a good change for the NBA.