The WNBA season has come to an end and the last day of the regular season was a pretty wild one!
The New York Liberty won on Friday, September 17. However, at the time, they were not in the playoff picture and needed a miracle to get in.
Miracle answered. With the Los Angeles Sparks and Washington Mystics losing on the final day of the season, the Liberty held a tie-breaker over both teams and were rewarded with a playoff berth for Thursday, Sept. 23, against the Phoenix Mercury.
Additionally, the Minnesota Lynx won on the last day of the season, bumping them up to the 3 seed. Let’s discuss the playoff bracket so you can better understand the significance of the seeding.
HOW IT WORKS
The WNBA Playoffs are structured differently than other sports leagues in North America.
Round 1 and Round 2 in the WNBA Playoffs are single elimination. Think of Round 1 like a first play-in game to advance to the next single elimination matchup in Round 2.
The first single-elimination matchups are as follows:
No. 5 Phoenix Mercury vs. No. 8 New York Liberty
No. 6 Chicago Sky vs. No. 7 Dallas Wings
The winners of these two games advance to the next single-elimination matchup:
No. 3 Minnesota Lynx vs. Lowest remaining seed (highest number)
No. 4 Seattle Storm vs. Highest remaining seed (lowest number)
- Round 1 and Round 2 are single elimination
- No. 3 and No. 4 seed get a bye until Round 2
- Winners in Round 2 advance to semifinals
WHERE ARE NO. 1 AND NO. 2?
You may be wondering: “What about the Top 2 seeds?” The top two seeds get a double-bye to WNBA’s semi-finals.
This is the most advantageous seeding in all of sports.
The winners in Round 2 will move on to the semi-finals. The lowest remaining seed will get a date with No. 1 Connecticut Sun and the highest seed remaining (lowest number) will face No. 2 Las Vegas Aces.
The semi-finals matchups are best-of-5 series for a puncher’s chance at the WNBA Finals.
The winners of these two series will meet in the WNBA Finals! You can check out the bracket below.