History

How No. 1 overall seeds have fared in playoffs since 2000

From NBA.com Staff

The Milwaukee Bucks collected an NBA-best 56 wins in 2019-20 and, as such, entered the 2020 playoffs as the No. 1 overall seed.Yet for the second consecutive time in the postseason, the Bucks are going home without a trip to The Finals despite being the No. 1 overall seed.

Here’s a look back at the last 20 seasons of No. 1 overall seeds and how they fared. The takeaway? Milwaukee isn’t the only No. 1 overall seed in that span to fall short of a Finals berth …

* * *

No. 1 overall seeds since 1999-2000 season
Season Team Record Playoff result
2019-20 ^ Bucks 56-17 Lost 4-1 to Heat in Eastern Conference semifinals
2018-19 Bucks 60-22 Lost 4-2 to Raptors in Eastern Conference finals
2017-18 Rockets 65-17 Lost 4-3 to Warriors in Western Conference finals
2016-17 Warriors 67-15 Won NBA championship (beat Cavs 4-1)
2015-16 Warriors 73-9 * Lost 4-3 to Cavs in The Finals
2014-15 Warriors 67-15 Won NBA championship (beat Cavs 4-2)
2013-14 Spurs 62-20 Won NBA championship (beat Heat 4-1)
2012-13 Heat 66-16 Won NBA championship (beat Spurs 4-3)
2011-12 ^^ Bulls 50-16 Lost 4-2 to 76ers in first round
2011-12 ^^ Spurs 50-16 Lost 4-2 to Thunder in Western Conference finals
2010-11 Bulls 62-20 Lost 4-1 to Heat in Eastern Conference finals
2009-10 Cavs 61-21 Lost 4-2 to Celtics in Eastern Conference semifinals
2008-09 Cavs 66-16 Lost 4-2 to Magic in Eastern Conference finals
2007-08 Celtics 66-16 Won NBA championship (beat Lakers 4-2)
2006-07 Mavs 67-15 Lost 4-2 to Warriors in first round
2005-06 Pistons 64-18 Lost 4-2 to Heat in Eastern Conference finals
2004-05 Suns 62-20 Lost 4-1 to Spurs in Western Conference finals
2003-04 Pacers 61-21 Lost 4-2 to Pistons in Eastern Conference finals
2002-03 Spurs 60-22 Won NBA championship (beat Nets 4-2)
2001-02 Kings 61-21 Lost 4-3 to Lakers in Western Conference finals
2000-01 Spurs 58-24 Lost 4-0 to Lakers in Western Conference finals
1999-2000 Lakers 67-15 Won NBA championship (beat Pacers 4-2)
^ = Pandemic-shortened season

* = Most wins in regular season history

^^ = Lockout-shortened season (teams tied for best record)