NBA

NBA Finals schedule 2021: dates, games, format

Phoenix Suns and Milwaukee Bucks will contest the 2021 NBA Finals. The first game in the best-of seven play-off series tips off on Tuesday 6 July at 9 pm.

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NBA Finals schedule 2021: dates, games, format
Kevin C. Cox AFP

Western Conference champions, the Phoenix Suns take on Eastern Conference champions, the Milwaukee Bucks in the 2021 NBA Finals in the best-of seven play-off series which begins on Tuesday 6 July and will finish no later than Thursday 22 July – should the series go down to the wire.

Bucks' and Suns' long wait to contest the title

The Suns booked their place in the finals by beating fourth-seeded Los Angeles Clippers in the Conference Finals over six games. Earlier, they saw off the defending NBA champions Los Angeles Lakers in the opening round. This will be their third appearance in the finals and their first since 1993 when they succumbed to Michael Jordan’s Chicago Bulls, losing 4-2 in the series.

The Bucks have had to wait even longer for this moment. Their last appearance in the NBA final was back in 1974, one of only two appearances – they clinched the title three years earlier with a 4-0 victory over the Baltimore Bullets. Their road to the final this season, took them past the Miami Heat, the Brooklyn Nets and Atlanta Hawks.

2021 NBA Final schedule

Game 1 Milwaukee Bucks v Phoenix Suns. Tuesday 6 July 9 pm ET

Game 2 Milwaukee Bucks v Phoenix Suns. Thursday 8 July 9 pm ET

Game 3 Phoenix Suns v Milwaukee Bucks. Sunday 11 July 8 pm ET

Game 4 Phoenix Suns v Milwaukee Bucks. Wednesday 14 July 9 pm ET

Game 5 Milwaukee Bucks v Phoenix Suns. Saturday 17 July 9 pm ET (if necessary)

Game 6 Phoenix Suns v Milwaukee Bucks. Tuesday 20 July 9 pm ET (if necessary)

Game 7 Milwaukee Bucks v Phoenix Suns. Thursday 22 July 9 pm ET (if necessary)

The NBA Finals is a best-of-seven format with the team with the best regular season record having home-court advantage for the first game - and the seventh game if one is required. The Suns ended the 2021 regular season on 51-21 so have the home advantage in this case and the Bucks finished on 46-26. Teams with a home advantage have won 70% of all of the series in NBA Finals history.

The games will be played at the Phoenix Suns Arena in Phoenix, Arizona and the Fiserv Forum, Milwaukee, Wisconsin and can be watched on Youtube TV.