List of Teams That Recovered From 0-2 Deficits in the NBA Playoffs

List of Teams That Recovered From 0-2 Deficits in the NBA Playoffs

After a 33-point loss to the Golden State Warriors in Game 2 of the 2016 NBA Finals, the Cleveland Cavaliers were facing an 0-2 deficit and in need of four wins over the next 10 days against a 73-win team.

History wasn't on their side.

In NBA history, only three teams had recovered from an 0-2 deficit in the NBA Finals and only 23 teams had recovered from an 0-2 in any round of the NBA playoffs. LeBron James and the Cavs crushed history by winning Games 3, 5, 6, and 7 in winning the first championship in franchise history.

Five years later, there hasn't been another team to recover from an 0-2 deficit in the NBA Finals, though there have been six teams to recover from a 0-2 deficit in other rounds of the playoffs in the last five years.

Even with three 0-2 recoveries in the 2021 playoffs, only 7 percent of teams recover from 0-2 deficits: 30 of 434. Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks are attempting to become the 31st team, including just the fifth in the NBA Finals

Here's the full list of 0-2 playoff recoveries:

Year Team Opponent Round
2021 Clippers Jazz Semifinals
2021 Bucks Nets Semifinals
2021 Clippers Mavericks First Round
2019 Raptors Bucks Conference Finals
2018 Cavaliers Celtics Conference Finals
2017 Celtics Bulls First Round
2016 Cavaliers Warriors NBA Finals
2016 Trail Blazers Clippers First Round
2013 Grizzlies Clippers First Round
2012 Thunder Spurs Conference Finals
2008 Spurs Hornets Semifinals
2007 Cavaliers Pistons Conference Finals
2007 Jazz Rockets First Round
2006 Heat Mavericks NBA Finals
2005 Wizards Bulls First Round
2005 Mavericks Rockets First Round
2004 Lakers Spurs Semifinals
2001 Mavericks Jazz First Round
1995 Rockets Suns Semifinals
1994 Rockets Suns Semifinals
1994 Nuggets Sonics First Round
1993 Bulls Knicks Conference Finals
1993 Suns Lakers First Round
1990 Knicks Celtics First Round
1987 Warriors Jazz First Round
1977 Trail Blazers 76ers NBA Finals
1971 Bullets Knicks Conference Finals
1969 Celtics Lakers NBA Finals
1969 Lakers Warriors Semifinals
1956 Pistons Hawks Division Finals


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Photo: Erik Drost/Wikimedia Commons