NBA Commissioner Adam Silver discussed the possibility of reseeding teams 1-16 in the playoffs, regardless of the team’s conference affiliation, stating that the league will “continue to look at” the situation.
“I think though it would require revisiting the regular-season schedule as well. As I’ve said before, we don’t play a balanced schedule now, as I’m sure you know.
And for those that don’t, that means that teams in the East play each other more than they play teams in the West. And our feeling is, if we were going to seed 1-16, we would need to play a balanced schedule to make it fair for everyone if we were going to seed 1-16 in the playoffs.
It may be that as we continue to experiment with the number of days over which we can schedule 82 games that it will create more of an opportunity for a balanced schedule.”
The 82-game schedule as another topic of discussion as Silver stated that the league is not tied to an 82-game schedule forever.
“Let me add to that I said the other day [to USA Today] that there’s no magic in an 82-game season,” Silver said.
“It’s not a change you’re going to see in the short term, but I think when we step back and look holistically at our schedule and how playoffs are seeded we should look at the entire format.
Counter-balancing seeding playoff teams 1-16 is also the desire to create more rest for our players and when possible reduce the amount of travel.
“In adding the extra week to the regular season this year, we will be able to eliminate completely four games in five nights.
I think it’s the first time in the history of the league we were able to do that. Plus we have back to backs at an all-time low. If we took the existing format, the existing schedule and then we seeded playoffs 1-16, we’d be adding additional travel; you would have teams criss-crossing the country in the first round.”