WNBA officially approves the new league’s playoff and postseason format. The WNBA Board of Governors approved changes to the playoff format and postseason seeding that will become effective during the 2022 season. per WNBA. The new playoff picture will include three rounds of series using the best of 3-5-5 format. In other words, during the first series whoever wins two games will advance. Going forward, during the following series which team ever wins three games will advance.
The WNBA is a fairy new league. In fact, they are going into their 26th season as an organization. Eight teams with the highest winning percentages over 36 games will determine who qualifies for the playoffs. They will be seeded based on their record; all eight playoff teams will play in the first round. The bracket style of play will consist of the number one seed playing the eighth. Then the No. 4 seed will play the fifth, the third seed will play the sixth, and the second seed will play the seventh.
Biggest takeaways from WNBA’s new postseason format
It seems the playoffs will consist of no byes, for the first seed. After the first round, teams will remain the same seeding as the playoffs continue.
“We have been evaluating different playoff formats over the past 12 months, and the new playoff format being announced today will enable fans to engage with all of the league’s best teams and top stars right from the start of the postseason with all eight championship contenders immediately involved in exciting, first-round action,” said WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert.
“Following significant discussions with our Competition Committee and a Playoff subcommittee we formed last year. It was clear, that while the prior format’s single-elimination games created a win-and-advance level of excitement to the start of the postseason. The new best-of-three series format will provide added opportunities to create and showcase rivalries with all playoff-eligible teams participating.”
The prior playoff format, consisted of four rounds 1-1-5-5 format. Many people disagreed with this format because often time the number one and two seeds received multiple bye weeks going into the semifinals. This isn’t fair for the teams who are playing those weeks to play a team with two weeks of rest essentially. The new format will provide the top eight teams consistently from start to finish of their playoff runs.