The NBA Approves Format Change For The 2014 NBA Finals
It's been a long 28 years but the NBA Finals' home/away schedule is finally getting changed to coincide with the rest of the playoffs. The current format of 2-3-2 (that's two home games for the team with the best record, three for the other, two back to the original home team) is being made over to the 2-2-1-1-1.
Exiting commissioner, David Stern (who's retiring after 28 years at his post) habitually preached that the 2-3-2 module saved on travel costs but critics always felt the teams with the weaker record were instead rewarded with three home games consecutively.
Says the AP:
"There certainly was a perception ... it was unfair to the team that had the better record, that it was then playing the pivotal Game 5 on the road. So this obviously moves that game back to giving home-court advantage to the team with the better record if it's a 2-2 series," Deputy Commissioner Adam Silver said.
The vote came during Stern's final preseason meeting with his board of governors. Owners also voted to add an extra day between Games 6 and 7.
The league's competition committee had recommended the change last month back to 2-2-1-1-1, which was used in all but one finals from 1957 to 1984.
The change to the 2-3-2 format was one of the earliest made by Stern, who has often said he was acting on advice - or complaints - about the travel from former Celtics boss Red Auerbach. But with commercial flights long since replaced by charters, teams didn't have the same difficulties now with the number of trips.
With the regular season just days away, it should be interesting to see how the changes affect teams come playoff time. There are a slew of contenders up for the chip this year. Who's your pick?