Updated through 2002 Conference Semifinals
Notes on Best-of-Seven Playoff Series
Including the 2002 Conference Semifinals, the best-of-seven games format has been used in the NBA Playoffs 285 times in league history. Following are some notes on best-of-seven play:
GETTING A JUMP: It's important to win game #1 of the series. The team that wins the opening game has gone on to win 227 of 285 (.796) best-of-seven series.
HOW LONG? It's hard to predict how long a series will last. Of the 285 best-of-seven series ever played, 79 have gone the limit, with 36 four-game sweeps.
HOME SWEET HOME: The homecourt advantage is significant in best-of-seven series, with teams with the advantage having won 216 of 285 (.758) series.
COMEBACK KINGS: No team in NBA history has ever bounced back from a 3-0 deficit to win a best-of-seven series. Six teams (Boston, 1968; Los Angeles, 1970; Washington, 1979; Boston, 1981; Houston, 1995; Miami, 1997) have rebounded from a 3-1 deficit and seven teams (Boston, 1969; Los Angeles, 1969; Baltimore, 1971; Portland, 1977; Chicago, 1993; Houston, 1994; Houston, 1995) have rallied from a 2-0 deficit to win a series.