Tuesday, June 8th, 2010 at 3:15 pm  |  27 responses

Time to Change NBA Finals 2-3-2 Format?

With the Boston Celtics about to play three consecutive home games, strangely enough, it’s the local paper making the argument against the current NBA Finals scheduling format: “When questioned about the 2-3-2 NBA Finals format recently, commissioner David Stern attributed the change, now 25 years old, to Red Auerbach, who had complained that heavy travel for Games 5, 6, and 7 affected the quality of basketball. In those days, back-to-backs for Games 1 and 2 and Games 3 and 4 were common and Red was right; given the schedule, which allowed off days only if there was a change of venue, the increased travel as the series wore on affected play. That is no longer the case, yet the NBA seems married to this format that is annoying more than anything else. The Celtics are home for nearly a week as the Finals shift to Boston. Having three consecutive home games places pressure on the team without home-court advantage — the Celtics in this case — to win at least two of those games. Gaining home-court advantage should mean the right to host Game 7. But Games 6 and 7? It doesn’t make sense. If the Celtics take two of three this week against the Lakers, they still will have to win at Los Angeles to win the series. All the Lakers have to do is steal one of the next three games, then they have the comfort of playing at home the final two games. Although many in the NBA complained the 2-3-2 system would favor the team without home-court advantage, it actually makes it more difficult to win because a potential clinching Game 6 is on the road.”

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  • http://thekobebeef.wordpress.com LDR4

    They have needed to change this for some time. Travel has nothing to do with it anymore because games are arranged based on network schedules. This just one of many problems the NBA has but will not address.

  • chingy

    I always think the team with the 3 home games is at disadvantage.

  • Jack

    has more to do with all the media that cover the series (especially international) and them not having to go back and forth for 5, 6 and 7.

  • kobesBESTfriend

    who cares?the best team always wins anyways

  • http://www.slamonline.com/ niQ

    I thought I had a good grasp of the format before I read this. Now I iz confuzzled.

  • http://www.myspace.com/freedmusic fredd


  • http://aspov.blogspot.com Cheryl

    LMAO @ niQ.

  • Atrain

    Whatever the format is should be uniform throughout the entire playoffs

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    I kind of like the 2-3-2…

  • LD


  • T-Money

    Doesn’t matter. You’re at a disadvantage in both formats when you don’t have home court (duh). There is also something to be said with all the international media covering the Finals. Makes sense for everybody to only have to potentially do two trips instead of 4.

  • BostonBaller

    I have always disliked the 2-3-2 format. With the luxury jets and accommodations this format hasn’t been needed in a very long time. If the home teams win both games to start they have a huge advantage and only has to worry about getting one on the road before getting that home cooking. It’s hard (almost impossible) to win all 3 of those middle games before heading back on the road. GREEN for 18.

  • LA Huey

    I like the 2-2-1-1-1 for the 1st 3 rounds. 2-3-2 for the Finals is nice. Also, when the teams are that evenly (as they should in the NBA Finals) homecourt doesn’t matter as much.

  • Shem

    I like 2-3-2. It makes the series as even as possible. It’s clearly an advantage to play 3 at home, but it separates the home court advantage and may the best team win. Travel’s always an “issue” i guess, but now, road teams have a better chance at winning

  • http://www.slamonline.com/online/nba/2010/03/paul-pierce-and-the-celtics-hearing-boos/ L

    If it’s not broke then dont fix it. . . .

  • jumpman3224

    I’m not a big fan of the format, esp when the playoffs have been 2-2-1-1-1 through rounds 1-3. More often than not game 5 is the swing game, so the team with the better record should have game 5. To those that see the team with 3 home games at a disadvntage…how often does a finals series go 7 games?

  • D.

    Honesly, I don’t remember the Celtics whining about it two years ago when they had home-court advantage. So the Celtics, their fans and the Boston media should man up and stop complaining about the format just because they don’t have home court advantage this year. And the best team usually ends up winning anyway in a best-of-seven series, no matter the format.

  • Jose

    Co-sign LA Huey. Though i wouldn’t mind the 2-2-1-1-1 , i mean it’s the Finals. They have to have had won games on the road during their playoff run. this shouldn’t be any different.

  • http://www.slamonline.com melvin ely

    The team with Home Court advantage should be given the privelege to choose between 232 and 22111.

  • JoeMaMa


  • Justin

    It should stay the same throughout the playoffs. Who gives a rat’s ass about what the media wants and all their travel costs? Too bad! This was brought up in the mid 80′s cuz the Lakers and Celtics were always in the Finals and they wanted to cut the travel down for the coast to coast travel. As someone pointed out, with the games so far between and the new comforts of today’s air travel it should go back to the way it was. Game 5 should definitely be for the home court advantage team. As for the middle games being to that team’s advantage, Magic’s ’91 Lakers sure would disagree with that

  • http://www.slamonline.com/online/nba/2010/06/time-to-change-finals-2-3-2-format/ oinestep

    I disagree

  • vtrobot


  • Klav

    So how about the team with the better regular season record plays host the entire Finals. Then NOBODY has to go anywhere! Or…pick an arena in the middle of the two. Problem solved.

  • drizzle

    they should just play every game at MSG…the knicks will never make the finals so there is no homecourt…

  • http://www.google.com Bobby

    i like 5-2!!!

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