The NBA Realignment – New Divisions, No Conferences

The NBA is coming off a great All-Star game that showcased lock down defense in the final seconds.

During the All-Star Break, Commissioner Adam Silver said he’d be open to virtually eliminating conferences and reseeding the NBA Playoffs.

Eliminate the Conferences

With reseeding the NBA Playoffs and the change in format to the All-Star teams, there’s no reason to keep conferences.  Bye bye Eastern and Western Conferences in the NBA.

What would be the point in keeping conferences if there’s no All-Star team or

NBA Expansion

With the league moving away from conferences, it makes sense to expand.  If I’m NBA Commissioner, I award expansion teams to Seattle and Las Vegas.  I bring back the Seattle SuperSonics.

A move into Las Vegas, puts the NBA in a market that’s given it’s expansion NHL team a huge home advantage.  It also moves forward the NBA’s acceptance of gambling.  Silver has been a proponent and he can embrace it even more by moving to this sports betting mecca.

NBA Realignment

With expansion, the NBA would be at 32 teams.  Like the NFL with 32 teams, the NBA should realign into eight divisions.  To help build rivalries and maintain existing ones, these would be regional.  Here’s how I’d set up the new NBA:

Division 1 Division 2 Division 3 Division 4
Boston Milwaukee Cleveland Miami
Philadelphia Minnesota Washington Orlando
New York Detroit Indiana Atlanta
Brooklyn Toronto Chicago Charlotte
Division 5 Division 6 Division 7 Division 8
Portland Los Angeles Denver New Orleans
Seattle Los Angeles Utah Dallas
Sacramento Phoenix Oklahoma City Houston
Golden State Las Vegas Memphis San Antonio

New NBA Playoffs

The NBA Playoffs should guarantee each division champion a spot and then award the next eight spots to the teams with the best record.  Teams should be seeded though according to record.

The playoffs need to be shortened.  It got boring last year as the Warriors cruised through.  Did we need 4 games to know the Warriors were far superior?

Create some of the magic of the NCAA Tournament.  The first round of the NCAA tournament should be 1 game.  That’s right win or die.  The team with the better record would host the game.

The playoffs gradually grow in series length to 3, 5 and 7 games.

The NBA is booming.  It has a ton of stars but could evolve the game to more cities and exciting postseason.  Commissioner Silver has shown he’s open to change.  Now’s the time to make it happen.