Teams to Come Back From 3-1 and 3-0 Series Deficits in NBA Playoffs

2019 NBA Finals - Game Four
2019 NBA Finals - Game Four | Ezra Shaw

While the NBA is the only major professional league that hasn't seen one of its teams overcome a 3-0 playoff series deficit, there have been multiple NBA teams to both overcome and blow 3-1 series leads.

Here's a look at the list of NBA teams that have blown 3-1 and 3-0 series leads.

How Many NBA Teams Have Come Back From a 3-1 Series Lead?

Since all rounds of the NBA Playoffs were changed to a best-of-seven series in 2003, there have been seven teams to overcome a 3-1 series deficit and win Game 7. Since 1968, only 13 teams have won the series after trailing 3-1 in the NBA Playoffs.

However, the 2016 Cleveland Cavaliers are the only team to overcome a 3-1 series deficit and win Game 7 in the NBA Finals. The 2020 Denver Nuggets also became the only NBA team to come back from multiple 3-1 series deficits in the same postseason.

NBA Teams to Come Back From a 3-1 Series Lead and Win Game 7

1) 1968: Boston Celtics vs. Philadelphia 76ers (Eastern Conference Finals)

2) 1970: Los Angeles Lakers vs. Phoenix Suns (Western Conference Finals)

3) 1979: Washington Bullets vs. San Antonio Spurs (Eastern Conference Finals)

4) 1981: Boston Celtics vs. Philadelphia 76ers (Eastern Conference Finals)


5) 1995: Houston Rockets
vs. Phoenix Suns (Western Conference Semifinals)

6) 1997: Miami Heat vs. New York Knicks (Eastern Conference Semifinals)

7) 2003: Detroit Pistons vs. Orlando Magic (Eastern Conference First Round)

8) 2006: Phoenix Suns vs. Los Angeles Lakers (Western Conference First Round)

9) 2015: Houston Rockets vs. Los Angeles Clippers (Western Conference Semifinals)

10) 2016: Golden State Warriors vs. Oklahoma City Thunder (Western Conference Finals)

11) 2016: Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Golden State Warriors (NBA Finals)

12) 2020: Denver Nuggets vs. Utah Jazz (Western Conference First Round)

13) 2020: Denver Nuggets vs. Los Angeles Clippers (Western Conference Semifinals)

How Many NBA Teams Have Come Back From a 3-0 Series Lead?

There has never been a team that came back from an 0-3 series deficit and won a Game 7. However, there have been three NBA teams that forced a Game 7 after going down 0-3 in a series.

NBA Teams to Come Back From 0-3 Series Deficit and Lose Game 7

1) 1951: New York Knicks vs. Rochester Royals (NBA Finals)

2) 1994: Denver Nuggets vs. Utah Jazz (Western Conference Semifinals)

3) 2003: Portland Trail Blazers vs. Dallas Mavericks (Western Conference First Round)

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David Hayes is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, David Hayes also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username DavidWHayes. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.

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