For the first time since 1984, the Finals were played in a 2–2–1–1–1 format. They were also the first playoffs overseen by Commissioner Adam Silver.
The San Antonio Spurs continued the longest active playoff streak in the NBA at 17 straight appearances. The Toronto Raptors and Washington Wizards made their first playoff appearance since 2008, while the Charlotte Bobcats, in their final playoff appearance before renaming themselves the Hornets, returned after a four-year absence. All three teams from Texas made the playoffs for the first time since 2009. For the first time since 2005, the Los Angeles Lakers and New York Knicks did not qualify for the playoffs in the same year. For the first time since 1994, the Lakers and Celtics missed the playoffs in the same season.
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