What is the WNBA Playoff Format for 2023?

In the world of women’s basketball, excitement reached its peak as the 2023 WNBA playoffs kicked off on September 13, 2023. With the Las Vegas Aces securing the coveted No. 1 seed, eight formidable teams are battling it out for the championship. This article will provide you with a comprehensive overview of the 2023 WNBA playoff format, including the rounds, scheduling, and how you can catch all the action.

Review the Playoff Format

The 2023 WNBA playoffs are structured around three intense rounds: the first round, the semifinals, and the finals. Let’s break down the key details:

First Round

The first round consists of three games:

  • Game 1: Wednesday, Sept. 13, 8 p.m. ET, ESPN2
  • Game 2: Sunday, Sept. 17, 1 p.m. ET, ESPN
  • Game 3: Wednesday, Sept. 20, TBD (if necessary)


The semifinals feature a total of five games:

  • Game 1: Friday, Sept. 22, TBD
  • Game 2: Sunday, Sept. 24, TBD
  • Game 3: Tuesday, Sept. 26, TBD (if necessary)
  • Game 4: Thursday, Sept. 28, TBD (if necessary)
  • Game 5: Saturday, Sept. 30, TBD (if necessary)


The finals are the pinnacle of excitement with a potential five games:

  • Game 1: Sunday, Oct. 8 — 3 p.m. on ABC
  • Game 2: Wednesday, Oct. 11 — 8 p.m. ET on ESPN
  • Game 3: Sunday, Oct. 15 — 3 p.m. on ABC
  • Game 4: Wednesday, Oct. 18 — 8 p.m. ET on ESPN (if necessary)
  • Game 5: Friday, Oct. 20 — 8 p.m. ET on ESPN (if necessary)

The Playoff Format Itself

The WNBA playoffs adopt a 2-2-1 format for both the semifinals and the finals. In this format, the team with the higher seed hosts the first two games, creating an electric atmosphere in their home arena. If necessary, the fifth and final game will also be hosted by the higher seed.

Where to Watch

To catch all the thrilling playoff action, tune in to ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, and ESPNU. The grand finale, the 2023 WNBA Finals, will be broadcast on both ABC and ESPN, ensuring fans don’t miss a moment of the championship showdown.

The Current State of the Playoffs

Las Vegas and Connecticut are up 1-0 in their respective series as of September 14, 2023. As teams compete to qualify for the finals, the excitement is growing.

Let’s now discuss a few frequently asked inquiries regarding the 2023 WNBA playoff system.


Q: How many teams are participating in the 2023 WNBA playoffs? A: Eight teams are competing for the championship in the 2023 WNBA playoffs.

Q: When did the 2023 WNBA playoffs begin? A: The 2023 WNBA playoffs commenced on September 13, 2023.

Q: What is the significance of the No. 1 seed in the playoffs? A: The No. 1 seed, in this case, the Las Vegas Aces, secured home-court advantage for the playoff games.

Q: How many rounds are there in the 2023 WNBA playoffs? A: The playoffs consist of three rounds: the first round, the semifinals, and the finals.

Q: Where can I watch the WNBA playoffs? A: You can watch the WNBA playoffs on ABC, ESPN, ESPN2, and ESPNU, with the finals airing on ABC and ESPN.

Q: In the semifinals or championship game, what happens if a series is tied? The team with the higher seed hosts the first two games and, if necessary, the fifth game in the 2-2-1 format.


The 2023 WNBA playoff promise to be a thrilling spectacle, featuring intense competition and high-stakes games. With a detailed understanding of the format and scheduling, you’re now well-prepared to enjoy this year’s championship journey. Stay tuned to witness history in the making as the best in women’s basketball battle for supremacy.

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