The WNBA playoffs are here!
The regular season wrapped up Sunday with the Liberty grabbing the final playoff spot thanks to losses by the Mystics and Sparks. All three teams finished with identical records but the Liberty clinched the final spot because of the best head-to-head record. The Sun enter on an absolute tear; they ripped off 14 straight wins to end the regular season en route to finishing with the league’s best record.
With the playoff bracket set, here is everything you need to know before the first round tips off Thursday.
WNBA playoff format and bracket
Unlike the NBA, which sends the same number of playoff teams from each conference, the top eight teams qualify for the WNBA playoffs, regardless of conference.
|1. Connecticut Sun||26-6||0.813||—|
|2. Las Vegas Aces||24-8||0.750||2.0|
|3. Minnesota Lynx||22-10||0.688||4.0|
|4. Seattle Storm||21-11||0.656||5.0|
|5. Phoenix Mercury||19-13||0.594||7.0|
|6. Chicago Sky||16-16||0.500||10.0|
|7. Dallas Wings||14-18||0.438||12.0|
|8. New York Liberty||12-20||0.375||15.0|
There are four rounds in all.
- The teams with the two best records earn a double bye to the best-of-five semifinals.
- The teams with the third-best and fourth-best records earn a bye to the single-elimination second round.
- The next four teams open with a single-elimination first round.
- Teams are reseeded after each round with the highest seed facing off against the lowest-remaining seed in each round.
When do the WNBA playoffs start in 2021?
- Last day of regular season: Sunday, Sept. 19
- WNBA playoffs begin: Thursday, Sept. 23
- WNBA Finals begin: Sunday, Oct. 10
- WNBA Finals last possible game: Tuesday, Oct. 19
WNBA playoffs channels, how to live stream
ABC, ESPN and ESPN2 will provide coverage of up to 19 games during the WNBA playoffs and the WNBA Finals. You can also live stream the WNBA playoffs with fuboTV (free seven-day trial).
WNBA playoff schedule 2021
Thursday, Sept. 23 — First round (single elimination)
|(7) Dallas Wings at (6) Chicago Sky||8 p.m.||ESPN2|
|(8) New York Liberty at (5) Phoenix Mercury||10 p.m.||ESPN2|
Sunday, Sept. 26 — Second round (single elimination)
|Lowest remaining seed at (3) Minnesota Lynx||TBD||TBD|
|Highest remaining seed at (4) Seattle Storm||TBD||TBD|
Semifinals (best of five) — (1) Connectict Sun vs. TBD
|Game 1||Tue., Sept. 28||TBD at Connecticut||8 p.m.||ESPN2|
|Game 2||Thu., Sept. 30||TBD at Connecticut||8 p.m.||ESPN2|
|Game 3||Sun., Oct. 3||Connecticut at TBD||TBD||TBD|
|Game 4*||Wed., Oct. 6||Connecticut at TBD||TBD||ESPN|
|Game 5*||Fri., Oct. 8||TBD at Connecticut||TBD||ESPN2|
Semifinals (best of five) — (2) Las Vegas Aces vs TBD
|Game 1||Tue., Sept. 28||TBD at Las Vegas||10 p.m.||ESPN2|
|Game 2||Thu., Sept. 30||TBD at Las Vegas||10 p.m.||ESPN2|
|Game 3||Sun., Oct. 3||Las Vegas at TBD||TBD||TBD|
|Game 4*||Wed., Oct. 6||Las Vegas at TBD||TBD||ESPN|
|Game 5*||Fri., Oct. 8||TBD at Las Vegas||TBD||ESPN2|
WNBA Finals (best of five)
|Game 1||Sun., Oct. 10||3 p.m.||ABC|
|Game 2||Wed., Oct. 13||9 p.m.||ESPN|
|Game 3||Fri., Oct. 15||9 p.m.||ESPN2|
|Game 4*||Sun., Oct. 17||3 p.m.||ESPN|
|Game 5*||Tue., Oct. 19||9 p.m.||ESPN2|
Odds to win 2021 WNBA Finals
The Connecticut Sun, winners of 14 straight games entering the playoffs, are the betting favorite to win the title at +200.
Odds courtesy of BetMGM
|Las Vegas Aces||+220|
|New York Liberty||+10000|