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NBA Playoffs: Which postseason campaign holds the record for most number of Game 7s?

2016 NBA Finals - Game Seven
2016 NBA Finals - Game Seven
Arhaan Raje
ANALYST

Game 7s are one of the most crunch and big-time matches in the NBA playoffs for obvious reasons. Two evenly matched teams go into it having beaten each other three times apiece, making it one of the most anticipated games for that particular series.

The 2021 NBA playoffs so far, have seen only one game 7, which was played between the LA Clippers and Dallas Mavericks. The Brooklyn Nets and Milwaukee Bucks are about to be the second pair to play a Game 7 on Saturday after the Bucks leveled the series 3-3 on Thursday night.

Meanwhile, there could be two more series that could have to be decided with a Game 7. The Utah Jazz will have to beat the LA Clippers, while the Philadelphia 76ers will have to overcome the Atlanta Hawks to force a Game 7 for their respective series on Friday night.


NBA Playoffs: Which postseasons have had the most number of Game 7s?

There could be a great possibility that the current postseason could have the most number of Game 7s played in NBA playoffs history. However, it will largely depend on the Hawks-76ers and Clippers-Jazz series. If those contests do go down to Game 7s, it will take two of the three remaining series after that to break the record (5) of most Game 7s in a postseason.

On that note, let's find out which postseasons have the most number of Game 7s in NBA playoffs history.


#1 1994 NBA Playoffs

The 1994 NBA playoffs had 3 Conference semi-final series (2 from West and 1 from East), one (Eastern) Conference Finals and the NBA Finals that had to be played out in a best-of-seven-games contest.

Here's a full list of all five series and the teams that were involved in Game 7s that season:

  • Utah Jazz (4) vs Denver Nuggets (3) - Western Conference Semi-Finals
  • Houston Rockets (4) vs Phoenix Suns (3) - Western Conference Semi-Finals
  • Chicago Bulls (3) vs New York Knicks (4) - Eastern Conference Semi-Finals
  • Indiana Pacers (3) vs New York Knicks (4) - Eastern Conference Finals
  • Houston Rockets (3) vs New York Knicks (4) - NBA Finals

The New York Knicks, despite playing three consecutive seven-game series, went onto win the NBA championship that year.

#2 2014 NBA Playoffs

2014 NBA Finals - Game Five
2014 NBA Finals - Game Five

In the 2014 NBA playoffs, the Western Conference featured three of the five seven-game series, while the Eastern Conference had two. Coincidentally, all the series that went on till Game 7 were played in the first round itself.

Here's a full list of all five series and the teams that were involved in Game 7s that season:

  • San Antonio Spurs (4) vs Dallas Mavericks (3) - Western Conference Round One
  • LA Clippers (4) vs Golden State Warriors (3) - Western Conference Round One
  • OKC Thunder (4) vs Memphis Grizzlies (3) - Western Conference Round One
  • Indiana Pacers (4) vs Atlanta Hawks (3) - Eastern Conference Round One
  • Brooklyn Nets (4) vs Toronto Raptors (3) - Eastern Conference Round One

The San Antonio Spurs beat LeBron James and the Miami Heat that year to win the NBA Finals by a 4-1 margin. A young Kawhi Leonard won his first NBA Finals MVP that postseason.

#3 2016 NBA Playoffs

The 2016 NBA playoffs was one of the most historic campaigns that ended with one of the best Game 7s in the history of playoffs.

LeBron James and Kyrie Irving led the Cleveland Cavaliers to their first NBA championship, becoming the only team to make a comeback from being down 1-3 to win the Finals series 4-1 against the Golden State Warriors.

Among the other four Game 7 series from that year, two of them were played in the Eastern Conference bracket, while one was played in the Western Conference featuring runners-up, the Golden State Warriors.

Here's a full list of all five series and the teams that were involved in Game 7s that season:

  • Miami Heat (4) vs Charlotte Hornets (3) - Eastern Conference Round One
  • Toronto Raptors (4) vs Indiana Pacers (3) - Eastern Conference Round One
  • Toronto Raptors (4) vs Miami Heat (3) - Eastern Conference Semi-Finals
  • Golden State Warriors (4) vs OKC Thunder (3) - Western Conference Finals
  • Cleveland Cavaliers (4) vs Golden State Warriors (3) - NBA Finals

Edited by S Chowdhury
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