How The West Was Won…Possibly
February 9th, 2015 by Justin Thomas
The NBA has been buzzing after Commissioner Adam Silver’s comments regarding the possibility of an adjusted playoff system. It’s looking like adjustment might be necessary seeing as some great Western Conference teams and players may miss the playoffs.
In the Western Conference, there are five teams that are separated by less than eight games, and two of those teams will not get to make the playoffs even though they are all above a .500 record. Whereas in the Eastern Conference, the seven and eight-seed teams are both at least seven games below the .500 mark.
Currently, New Orleans and MVP candidate Anthony Davis, and Oklahoma City sit on the outside looking in. That could very easily change with the Clippers losing Blake Griffin for an indefinite amount of time due to elbow surgery to treat a staph infection.
You know parity is lacking in the NBA when you can say that any of the top-10 teams in the West can probably handily beat teams six, seven and eight in the East.
Honestly, the reason Adam Silver is considering a playoff system shift that would alter the 16 teams to consist of the six division winners and the other top-10 teams league-wide is because he sees that people want to see the Pelicans, Clippers and Thunder of the West much more than the Bucks, Hornets, Heat and Nets of the East.
Also, if the schedules were adjusted to allow a more even distribution of games between Eastern Conference and Western Conference teams, who’s to say that a team like the Kings wouldn’t have something closer to a .500 record?
In all likelihood, the NBA runs the risk of losing out on quite a bit of money if the playoffs don’t include players like Anthony Davis and Blake Griffin. Much more thought needs to go into the idea of changing the NBA playoff system before it becomes reality, but the state of the league seems to lend itself very well to an adjustment of this nature.