The Championship Series for the seasonal NBA competition is known as the NBA Finals and pits the Western and Eastern NBA Conference Champions against each other for the title in the final round of the NBA Playoffs.
The NBA Playoffs feature eight teams from each conference made up of the three division winners and the next best NBA team from each conference based on their season record.
NBA Playoffs results decide the two NBA Conferences winners.
The final round of the NBA Playoffs – run under a tournament format – is the NBA Finals that are held annually in June.
The NBA Finals series is a best-of-seven game structure and the first team to win four games take out the NBA League Championship. The successful squad are also awarded the Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy.
Seasonal pro-American basketball champions have been decided since 1947, but the series format has undergone a few changes over the years and the official NBA Finals title was officially decided upon in 1986.
2016/17 NBA Finals Series
- Season: 71st
- Dates: June 1 – 18, 2017
NBA Finals Betting
NBA Finals betting is open all year round via the NBA Championship Winner markets.
The most popular NBA Finals odds are head-to-head markets for each match, plus line and total points betting.
NBA Finals History
- From 1946 – 1983 the NBA Championship Winners received the Walter A. Brown Trophy
- From 1985 – 2013 the NBA Finals used a 2-3-2 game format – home court advantage to the team with the better NBA regular season record
- During that time teams with home-court advantage dominate the NBA Finals results 21 – 8
- Prior to 1985 and for one year in 2014 the NBA Championship Finals Series followed the 2-2-1-1-1 format
NBA Finals – Known As
- BAA Finals (1947 – 1949)
- NBA World Championship Series (1950 – 1982; 1985)
- Showdown 83 (1983)
- Showdown 84 (1984)
- NBA Finals (1986 – present)
The Minneapolis Lakers dominated the early years of the NBA Finals with five championship victories in six years from 1949 – 1954 with their team headlined by NBA great George Mikan.
During 13 seasons (1956/57 – 1968/69) the Boston Celtics were the NBA team to beat with an 11 -1 domination of the NBA Finals results, including eight straight victories from 1959-66. As such the years from 1957-69 have been donned the “Celtics Dynasty”. This period in NBA history also saw the rise to fame of the legendary Bill Russell who, as a player, enjoyed 11 NBA Championship wins and was awarded the NBA Most Valuable Player five times.
The 1980s were best known in NBA Finals history for the fierce rivalry between the Lakers led by Magic Johnson and the Celtics whose line-up included now NBA President of the Indiana Pacers Larry Bird.
Michael Jordan will forever be one of the most recognised names in basketball and he led the Chicago Bulls’ domination in NBA Finals during the 1990s. After the “Rule of the Bulls” as the era has been dubbed that also featured the infamous Scottie Pippen and Dennis Rodman, the Lakers and Spurs’ were the next to stop winning a combined 11 of the 12 Western Conference NBA titles and nine NBA Championships from 1999-2010.
NBA Finals these days are all about LeBron James who, up to 2015/16, has won three NBA Finals series. James currently plays for the Cleveland Cavaliers who he has been with since 2014 and who won their first ever NBA Championship in franchise history thanks to his leadership in 2016.
NBA Finals Records
Team NBA Finals Records
- Most Finals Appearances: 31 – Minneapolis / Los Angeles Lakers
- Most Finals Wins: 17 – Boston Celtics
- Most Common Rivalry: 12 times – Boston Celtics (9) vs. Los Angeles Lakers (3)
Player NBA Finals Records
- Most Years Played in Finals: Bill Russell (12)
- Most Finals Games Played: Bill Russell (7)
- Most Finals Points in Career: Jerry West (1,679)
Recent NBA League Championship Winners
|2015/2016||CLEVELAND CAVALIERS||GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS||4-3|
|2014/2015||GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS||CLEVELAND CAVALIERS||4-2|
|2013/2014||SAN ANTONIO SPURS||MIAMI HEAT||4-1|
|2012/2013||MIAMI HEAT||SAN ANTONIO SPURS||4-3|
|2011/2012||MIAMI HEAT||OKLAHOMA CITY THUNDER||4-1|
|2010/2011||DALLAS MAVERICKS||MIAMI HEAT||4-2|
|2009/2010||LOS ANGELES LAKERS||BOSTON CELTICS||4-3|
|2008/2009||LOS ANGELES LAKERS||ORLANDO MAGIC||4-1|
|2007/2008||BOSTON CELTICS||LOS ANGELES LAKERS||4-2|
|2006/2007||SAN ANTONIO SPURS||CLEVELAND CAVALIERS||4-0|
|2005/2006||MIAMI HEAT||DALLAS MAVERICKS||4-2|