May 14, 2004

WNBA to expand finals; Sets 2005 All-Star game for Connecticut

The WNBA Finals will extend from a best-of-three to a best-of-five format beginning with the 2005 season.

This year's finals will remain best-of-three as it has been since 1998. In the league's inaugural season, 1997, it was a one-game championship.

``We believe an expanded finals format will provide a truer test of the championship team and further showcase the stellar talent that exists in the WNBA,'' league president Val Ackerman said Thursday.

The first round of the playoffs and the conference finals will remain best-of-threes. The expanded finals will be a 2-2-1 format with the higher seed hosting Games 1, 2 and 5.

The league also announced that its 2005 All-Star game will be played at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Connecticut, the home of the Connecticut Suns. It will be the WNBA's sixth All-Star game.

The league does not have an All-Star game scheduled for this season, which opens May 20. Last year's All-Star game was played at Madison Square Garden.

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