2022 NBA Playoffs Guide: How do the NBA Playoffs Work?

The NBA playoffs are the major postseason event hosted to decide the title winner. The games are the year’s best-of-seven knockout events held after the NBA’s season and its prelim championship game, the play-ins tournament.

This guide contains all of the information you should know regarding the actual NBA playoffs. We’ll go over how many teams made the playoffs, how the teams are seeded, what the Play-in Championship game is, and how the playoffs progressed past round one. Punters can visit their favorite sportsbooks to wager on NBA betting odds as we await the playoffs.

The Play-In Tournament

The 7th and 8th seeds in every conference will get two chances of winning one match to secure a playoff spot in the play-in tournament, and the 9th and 10th seeds in each conference must win two straight matches.

Each conference’s 7th team fights the 8th team, with the victor earning the 7th seed. The team that wins the 9th vs. 10th game will encounter the loser of the 7-8 round, with the winning team earning the 8th seed in the ultimate bracket.

The Play-in tournament will be held for the second time in 2022. The first season was an exciting event, with the Memphis Grizzlies and San Antonio Spurs competing for a playoff spot in the Western Conference. The Indiana Pacers and Charlotte Hornets played a nine-point match in the East.

Each of those winners confronted the loser of the seven-eight seed game. The winner was then handed the number eight seed. With just their first victory, the team that wins the seven-eight seed match garnered the seventh seed.

When are the Playoffs Scheduled to Start?

The Play-in Tournament will last for four days, from April 12th to 15th. Round one begins on April 16th and will presumably last until another weekend in May.

Whereas the first round and the NBA Playoffs start dates are predetermined, the second round and Conference Finals start schedules will be decided by how long the previous round’s series lasts.

The NBA will hold the Play-in competitions for the 7-10 seeds for every conference for the third consecutive season before beginning the conventional 16-team playoff system.

After the Play-in Competitions, there will be a classical playoff bracket, with eight teams from the Eastern and Western Conferences struggling to compete in a 4 round playoff consisting of seven games in the series.

The seedings for the first round are 1-8, 2-7, 3-6, and 4-5. If an upset occurs, the NBA somehow doesn’t re-seed as the bracket is already fixed. 

Number of Teams in the NBA Playoffs

The playoffs comprise 16 groups in total, with the Play-in tournament allowing an additional two teams for every conference to compete for a spot.

The top 6 teams in all Eastern and Western Conferences are assured of advancing to the second round. To determine the final seventh and eighth seeds, the next four teams in the tournament compete in a six-game mini-tournament.

 How the Playoffs Work

Since 2016, the 16-team playoffs have followed the same pattern – with the top 8 teams from every conference progressing to the postseason.

Here’s a guide to understanding how the NBA Playoffs scheme works.

The top eight teams within every conference (Eastern and Western) are consistently rated in order of win ratio. The team with the highest score is seeded first, followed by the next best, and so on. Ties are fixed using head-to-head outcomes as the first decider, accompanied by how well a team won its league.

The seeds are used to generate a playoff bracket, which specifies all of the league matches for the duration of the competitions. The top seed, Number 1, will encounter the Number eight seed in round one. Number 2 will face Number 7, Number 3 will fight Number 6, and Number 4 will face Number 5.

The stronger playoff seed will always have the luxury of playing on their home court. All playoff games are best-of-seven in nature. 

The team that wins the 1-8 series faces the victor of the 4-5 series in the 2nd round or conference semifinals. The finalist of the 2-7 game will play the winner of the 3-6 game for the conference title, and the two teams that win will face off for the title game.

 The frontrunners of the conference championships would then face off in the NBA Finals. The NBA Finals are set to take place this year from June 2nd to June 19th, 2022. The team with the most frequent wins receives a home-ground advantage in the NBA Finals. 

Final Notes

There are only a few days left till the final moment of the 2021-2022 NBA play-ins, and the preparations for the NBA Finals will begin. There seem to be legacies on the line, and as mentioned in the guide, game-changing events are anticipated to happen.

With most teams having only about ten matches left in the preseason, punters can visit the updated NBA playoff odds at their favorite bookmaker.