WNBA Playoffs

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The WNBA Playoffs is an elimination tournament between eight teams in the Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA), ultimately deciding the final two teams who will play in the WNBA Finals. Starting 2016 Verizon is the official sponsor.

Current format[edit]

Following the WNBA regular season, eight teams in the entire league qualify for the playoffs and are seeded one to eight.

Regular season records determine the seedings of the teams. The team with the best record receives seed one, the team with the next best record receives seed two, and so on. The top two seeds get double byes, while the next two seeds get first-round byes.

These seedings are used to create a bracket that determines the match-ups throughout the playoffs. The first round of the playoffs consists of two match-ups based on the seedings (5-8 and 6-7). The two winners advance to the second round with a match-up between the number 3 seed and the lower of the advancing seeds and another match-up between the number 4 seed and the other first round winner. The winners of the first two rounds advance to the semifinals, where the lower ranked seed of the winners faces the number 1 seed, while the other remaining team faces the number 2 seed.

The first two rounds are single elimination games played on the higher ranking seed's home court. The semifinals and WNBA Finals are best-of-five series played in a 2-2-1 format, meaning the team with home-court advantage (better record) hosts games 1, 2, and 5 while their opponent hosts games 3 and 4.

Tiebreak procedures[edit]

  1. Better winning percentage among all head-to-head games involving tied teams.
  2. Better winning percentage against teams within conference (for Finals only: better record against teams in the opposite conference).
  3. Better winning percentage against all teams with a .500 or better record at the end of the season.
  4. Better point differential in games involving tied teams.
  5. Coin toss (or draw of lots, if at least 3 teams are still tied after the first 4 tiebreakers fail).

Playoff series history[edit]

2015 season[edit]

Main article: 2015 WNBA Playoffs
Further information: 2015 WNBA season and 2015 WNBA Finals
Conference Semi-Finals:
Best-of-3
Conference Finals:
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals:
Best-of-5
                 
E1 New York 2
E4 Washington 1
E1 New York 1
Eastern Conference
E3 Indiana 2
E2 Chicago 1
E3 Indiana 2
E3 Indiana 2
W1 Minnesota 3
W1 Minnesota 2
W4 Los Angeles 1
W1 Minnesota 2
Western Conference
W2 Phoenix 0
W2 Phoenix 2
W3 Tulsa 0

Bold Series winner
italics Team with home-court advantage

2014 season[edit]

Main article: 2014 WNBA Playoffs
Further information: 2014 WNBA season and 2014 WNBA Finals

There were 12 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference were seeded one to four.

Conference Semi-Finals:
Best-of-3
Conference Finals:
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals:
Best-of-5
                 
E1 Atlanta 1
E4 Chicago 2
E4 Chicago 2
Eastern Conference
E2 Indiana 1
E2 Indiana 2
E3 Washington 0
E4 Chicago 0
W1 Phoenix 3
W1 Phoenix 2
W4 Los Angeles 0
W1 Phoenix 2
Western Conference
W2 Minnesota 1
W2 Minnesota 2
W3 San Antonio 0

2013 season[edit]

Main article: 2013 WNBA Playoffs
Further information: 2013 WNBA season and 2013 WNBA Finals

There were 12 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference were seeded one to four.

Conference Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-5
                 
E1 Chicago 0
E4 Indiana 2
E4 Indiana 0
Eastern Conference
E2 Atlanta 2
E2 Atlanta 2
E3 Washington 1
E2 Atlanta 0
W1 Minnesota 3
W1 Minnesota 2
W4 Seattle 0
W1 Minnesota 2
Western Conference
W3 Phoenix 0
W2 Los Angeles 1
W3 Phoenix 2

2012 season[edit]

Main article: 2012 WNBA Playoffs
Further information: 2012 WNBA season and 2012 WNBA Finals

There were 12 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference were seeded one to four.

Conference Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-5
                 
E1 Connecticut 2
E4 New York 0
E1 Connecticut 1
Eastern Conference
E2 Indiana 2
E2 Indiana 2
E3 Atlanta 1
E2 Indiana 3
W1 Minnesota 1
W1 Minnesota 2
W4 Seattle 1
W1 Minnesota 2
Western Conference
W2 Los Angeles 0
W2 Los Angeles 2
W3 San Antonio 0

2011 season[edit]

Main article: 2011 WNBA Playoffs
Further information: 2011 WNBA season and 2011 WNBA Finals

There were 12 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference were seeded one to four.

Conference Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-5
                 
E1 Indiana 2
E4 New York 1
E1 Indiana 1
Eastern Conference
E3 Atlanta 2
E2 Connecticut 0
E3 Atlanta 2
E3 Atlanta 0
W1 Minnesota 3
W1 Minnesota 2
W4 San Antonio 1
W1 Minnesota 2
Western Conference
W3 Phoenix 0
W2 Seattle 1
W3 Phoenix 2

2010 season[edit]

Main article: 2010 WNBA Playoffs
Further information: 2010 WNBA season and 2010 WNBA Finals

There are 12 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference are seeded one to four. Starting in 2010, the first two rounds changed to a 1-1-1 format, with the higher-seeded team hosting games 1 & 3.

Conference Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-5
                 
E1 Washington 0
E4 Atlanta 2
E4 Atlanta 2
Eastern Conference
E2 New York 0
E2 New York 2
E3 Indiana 1
E4 Atlanta 0
W1 Seattle 3
W1 Seattle 2
W4 Los Angeles 0
W1 Seattle 2
Western Conference
W2 Phoenix 0
W2 Phoenix 2
W3 San Antonio 0

2009 season[edit]

Main article: 2009 WNBA Playoffs
Further information: 2009 WNBA season and 2009 WNBA Finals

There are 13 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference are seeded one to four.

Conference Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-5
                 
E1 Indiana 2
E4 Washington 0
E1 Indiana 2
Eastern Conference
E3 Detroit 1
E2 Atlanta 0
E3 Detroit 2
E1 Indiana 2
W1 Phoenix 3
W1 Phoenix 2
W4 San Antonio 1
W1 Phoenix 2
Western Conference
W3 Los Angeles 1
W2 Seattle 1
W3 Los Angeles 2

2008 season[edit]

Main article: 2008 WNBA Playoffs
Further information: 2008 WNBA season and 2008 WNBA Finals

There were 14 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference were seeded one to four.

Conference Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-5
                 
E1 Detroit 2
E4 Indiana 1
E1 Detroit 2
E3 New York 1
E2 Connecticut 1
E3 New York 2
E1 Detroit 3
W1 San Antonio 0
W1 San Antonio 2
W4 Sacramento 1
W1 San Antonio 2
W3 Los Angeles 1
W2 Seattle 1
W3 Los Angeles 2

2007 season[edit]

Main article: 2007 WNBA Playoffs
Further information: 2007 WNBA season and 2007 WNBA Finals

There were 13 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference were seeded one to four.

Conference Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-5
                 
E1 Detroit 2
E4 New York 1
E1 Detroit 2
E2 Indiana 1
E2 Indiana 2
E3 Connecticut 1
E1 Detroit 2
W1 Phoenix 3
W1 Phoenix 2
W4 Seattle 0
W1 Phoenix 2
W2 San Antonio 0
W2 San Antonio 2
W3 Sacramento 1

2006 season[edit]

Main article: 2006 WNBA Playoffs
Further information: 2006 WNBA season

There were 14 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference were seeded one to four.

Conference Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-5
                 
E1 Connecticut 2
E4 Washington 0
E1 Connecticut 1
E2 Detroit 2
E2 Detroit 2
E3 Indiana 0
E2 Detroit 3
W2 Sacramento 2
W1 Los Angeles 2
W4 Seattle 1
W1 Los Angeles 0
W2 Sacramento 2
W2 Sacramento 2
W3 Houston 0

2005 season[edit]

Further information: 2005 WNBA season

There were 13 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference were seeded one to four.

Conference Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-5
                 
E1 Connecticut 2
E4 Detroit 0
E1 Connecticut 2
E2 Indiana 0
E2 Indiana 2
E3 New York 0
E1 Connecticut 1
W1 Sacramento 3
W1 Sacramento 2
W4 Los Angeles 0
W1 Sacramento 2
W3 Houston 0
W2 Seattle 1
W3 Houston 2

2004 season[edit]

Further information: 2004 WNBA season

There were 13 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference were seeded one to four.

Conference Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-3
                 
E1 Connecticut 2
E4 Washington 1
E1 Connecticut 2
E2 New York 0
E2 New York 2
E3 Detroit 1
E1 Connecticut 1
W2 Seattle 2
W1 Los Angeles 1
W4 Sacramento 2
W4 Sacramento 1
W2 Seattle 2
W2 Seattle 2
W3 Minnesota 0

2003 season[edit]

Further information: 2003 WNBA season

There were 14 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference were seeded one to four.

Conference Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-3
                 
E1 Detroit 2
E4 Cleveland 1
E1 Detroit 2
E3 Connecticut 0
E2 Charlotte 0
E3 Connecticut 2
E1 Detroit 2
W1 Los Angeles 1
W1 Los Angeles 2
W4 Minnesota 1
W1 Los Angeles 2
W3 Sacramento 1
W2 Houston 1
W3 Sacramento 2

2002 season[edit]

Further information: 2002 WNBA season

There were 16 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference were seeded one to four.

Conference Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-3
                 
E1 New York 2
E4 Indiana 1
E1 New York 2
E3 Washington 0
E2 Charlotte 0
E3 Washington 2
E1 New York 0
W1 Los Angeles 2
W1 Los Angeles 2
W4 Seattle 0
W1 Los Angeles 2
W3 Utah 0
W2 Houston 1
W3 Utah 2

2001 season[edit]

Further information: 2001 WNBA season

There were 16 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference were seeded one to four.

Conference Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-3
                 
E1 Cleveland 1
E4 Charlotte 2
E4 Charlotte 2
E2 New York 1
E2 New York 2
E3 Miami 1
E4 Charlotte 0
W1 Los Angeles 2
W1 Los Angeles 2
W4 Houston 0
W1 Los Angeles 2
W2 Sacramento 1
W2 Sacramento 2
W3 Utah 0

2000 season[edit]

Further information: 2000 WNBA season

There were 16 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in each conference were seeded one to four.

Conference Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-3
                 
E1 New York 2
E4 Washington 0
E1 New York 2
E2 Cleveland 1
E2 Cleveland 2
E3 Orlando 1
E1 New York 0
W2 Houston 2
W1 Los Angeles 2
W4 Phoenix 0
W1 Los Angeles 0
W2 Houston 2
W2 Houston 2
W3 Sacramento 0

1999 season[edit]

Further information: 1999 WNBA season

There were 12 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the three teams with the best record in each conference were seeded one to three. The top seeded team in each conference got a bye for the first round.

  Conference Semi-Finals
Single Game
Conference Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-3
                           
        
  E1  New York 2  
    E3  Charlotte 1  
E2  Detroit 54
  E3  Charlotte 60  
    E1  New York 1
  W1  Houston 2
          
        
W1  Houston 2
    W2  Los Angeles 1  
W2  Los Angeles 71
  W3  Sacramento 58  


1998 season[edit]

Further information: 1998 WNBA season

There were 10 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in the league were seeded one to four. Houston was switched to the Western Conference in 1998 so two Western Conference teams matched up in the WNBA Finals.

Playoff Semi-Finals
Best-of-3
WNBA Finals
Best-of-3
           
W1 Houston 2
E2 Charlotte 0
W1 Houston 2
W2 Phoenix 1
W2 Phoenix 2
E1 Cleveland 1

1997 season[edit]

Further information: 1997 WNBA season

This was the first year of existence for the WNBA. There were only 8 teams in the league. For the playoffs, the four teams with the best record in the league were seeded one to four. Houston was in the Eastern Conference in 1997 so two Eastern Conference teams matched up in the WNBA Championship.

Playoff Semi-Finals
Single Game
WNBA Championship
Single Game
           
E1 Houston 70
E4 Charlotte 54
E1 Houston 65
E2 New York 51
W3 Phoenix 41
E2 New York 59

See also[edit]

External links[edit]