Monday, June 10, 2013

NBA Finals 2-3-2 Format

The 2-3-2 format comes under fire each year when the NBA Finals are played.  Two games are played at the home of the team with the best record, then three games at the opponents home arena and the final two games are again at the home of the team with the best record.  This is done to cut down on travel between the Eastern and Western Conference champions who square off against each other in the NBA Finals.  Many think it gives an advantage to the team that has three in a row.  I don't agree. 

I like it.  The format used for earlier rounds of the NBA playoffs is 2-2-1-1-1.  Again the team with the best record has the first two games at home.  The pressure is still on them to win the first two games or they lose home court advantage.  No different than in the Finals.  Yes they would then be on the road for three games but any team who has reached the Finals has probably proven they can win on the road.  Sure the competition is stiffer now but if you can't win on the road you'd better get off the porch as the old saying says. 

I also believe it benefits both teams by cutting down on travel.  In the previous rounds both teams must travel up to four times per round which cuts down on any rest teams may hope to get.  With the NBA playoffs taking what seems like an additional four months to play rest is a good thing for players in the Finals who could be playing anywhere from 16 to 28 games after the regular season ends.

This isn't the most passionate subject I'll ever write on.  I do think there is no reason to tinker with it.  Let the teams get some extra rest.  If you are the better team, by record, then man up and win the first two games and then go win on the road.  Maybe not as dramatic as an underdog winning game six at home to force a game seven on the road to win it all but I don't think there is a good enough argument to change things around.  But I'm always open to hear folks arguments...

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