What Goes into Determining NBA Standings?

You might be a big basketball fan, but have found yourself scratching your head when it comes to the NBA standings and how they’re determined. Well, today you’re about to find it. First things first, we have 30 teams across North America competing against each other.

These teams are divided into the Eastern Conference and Western Conference and then further divided into divisions. The NBA holds 82 games per season usually and the standings are determined by what goes on during those games. 


Now the NBA standings table can be a little confusing to figure out if no one has explained it to you. So we’re going to break down how everything works in the league and how that ends up turning into the official NBA standings. We’ve got all that up next. 

Image source: Wikipedia.org

How the Divisions are Divided

We know that the 30 teams are divided into two conferences, but before they can get into the conference finals and then the NBA final, they’ve got to succeed in their divisions.Next we’ve got a list of the division breakdown and teams that belong to each division.

In the Atlantic Division you will find the Boston Celtics, Toronto Raptors, the Philadelphia 76ers, the New York Knicks and the Brooklyn nets.

The Central Division features the Indianapolis Pacers, The Milwaukee Bucks, the Chicago Bulls, the Detroit Pistons and the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The Southeast Division features the Orlando Magic, the Miami Heat, the Washington Wizards, the Atlanta Hawks and the Charlotte hornets.

The Pacific Conference features  the Los Angeles Clippers, The LA Lakers, the Sacramento Kings, the Phoenix Suns, and the Golden State Warriors.

The Southwest Division features the Houston Rockets, the Dallas Mavericks, the San Antonio Spurs, the New Orleans Pelicans and the Memphis Grizzlies.

Finally, the Northwest Division has the Denver Nuggets, the Utah Jazz, the Portland Trail Blazers, the Oklahoma City Thunder, and the Minnesota Timberwolves. 

The NBA finals are all based on how each team does in their division and then in their conference. 

The NBA Standings Table Breakdown

And now we’ve got what you have been waiting for, an exact breakdown of what each one of those columns on the NBA Standings table means. 

W – tells us the number of wins that a team has. 

L – is the number of times they have lost in the season, and there are usually no ties in the NBA. A team either wins or loses. When looking at the standings, this is the first thing you look at.

PCT – this stands for the winning percentage. In order to determine this rate, the NBA takes the total number of games and the wines. When the schedule is uneven, you should look at that PCT to determine which team is at the top of the standings.

GB – This stands for how many games the team is behind the first team. Home stands for the record of the team when they played at home, and the other – 

ROAD – gives us the record of the team when they were on the road. 

DIV – tells us which division the team is in.

CONF – tells us which conference the team is in.

PF – stands for the points against the PA, which tells you how many points that team has been averaging and how many points they have been allowing. It helps in determining the highest and the lowest teams in terms of scoring in the league.

A (+) and (-) – Here you can check out the difference in the teams between the points that have been scored for, and those against. This is the average number of points that they have been giving up. They are abbreviated as.

STRK – This is known as the current streak and tells us the team’s current streak of losses or wins. 

L10 – tells us how they have been doing in their last 10 games. 

Image Source: Wikipedia.org


We hope that you are now updated on what is exactly happening on that NBA Standings table. It may be hard to follow at first, but with our review above, you will be able to understand the standings of each team in the game, the division and the conferences.


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