RULES: REGULAR SEASON AND PLAYOFF SETTINGS

Updated: August 10, 2009, 2:34 PM ET

SEASON SCHEDULE & GAME LIMITS
All standard leagues play with a fixed 20-week regular season, with the playoffs taking place over the final four weeks of the 24-week NBA season. To view your team's schedule click on the "Schedule" link on your main team page. Below is a detailed look at the H2H season schedule (with game limits included).

FULL H2H SEASON SCHEDULE WITH GAME LIMITS
  DATES (NBA GAMEDAYS) GAME LIMITS NOTES
Week 1    Tue. 10/28 - Sun. 11/2 (6) 35  Season Starts Tue. 10/28
Week 2 Mon. 11/3 - Sun. 11/9 (7) 40
Week 3 Mon. 11/10 - Sun. 11/16 (7) 40  
Week 4 Mon. 11/17 - Sun. 11/23 (7) 40
Week 5 Mon. 11/24 - Sun. 11/30 (7) 40
Week 6 Mon. 12/1 - Sun. 12/7 (7) 40
Week 7 Mon. 12/8 - Sun. 12/14 (7) 40
Week 8 Mon. 12/15 - Sun. 12/21 (7) 40
Week 9 Mon. 12/22 - Sun. 12/28 (6) 35 No games 12/24/08
Week 10 Mon. 12/29 - Sun. 1/4/09 (6) 35 No games 1/1/09
Week 11 Mon. 1/5 - Sun. 1/11 (7) 40
Week 12 Mon. 1/12 - Sun. 1/18 (7) 40  
Week 13 Mon. 1/19 - Sun. 1/25 (7) 40
Week 14 Mon. 1/26 - Sun. 2/1 (7) 40
Week 15 Mon. 2/2 - Sun. 2/8 (7) 40
Week 16 Mon. 2/9 - Sun. 2/15 (4) 23  All-Star Break; No Games 2/13-15
Week 17 Mon. 2/16 - Sun. 2/22 (6) 35  All-Star Break; No Games 2/16
Week 18 Mon. 2/23 - Sun. 3/1 (7) 40
Week 19 Mon. 3/2 - Sun. 3/8 (7) 40
Week 20 Mon. 3/9 - Sun. 3/15 (7) 40  End of fantasy regular season 3/15
H2H PLAYOFFS
Round 1 Mon. 3/16 - Sun. 3/29 (14) 80  Winners Bracket: 1v4, 2v3
Round 2 Mon. 3/30 - Wed. 4/15 (16) 92  League Championship; No games 4/6 (NCAA Finals); End of season 4/15

PLAYOFF BRACKET SETUP
The Head-to-Head fantasy playoffs take place during the last four weeks of the NBA regular season. To view your league's playoff bracket click on the "Playoff Bracket" link on the "Scoreboard" tab. The playoffs start on Week 21 and run through Week 24 of the season (4 weeks). Round One takes place during Weeks 21 and 22 (two weeks), and Round Two takes place during Week 23 and 24 (two weeks).

NOTE: In 2009 ESPN changed from the "legacy" rules of playing two individual matchups over the two weeks and adding them together (ie 6-2 + 3-5 = 9-7). This season BOTH week are combined into one single matchup period (which also extends the game started limits to include two weeks).

MAKING THE PLAYOFFS
The top four teams make the playoffs and are comprised of the two division champs and two wild-card teams. Division champs are the teams that win the league divisions. The next two teams according to the tie-breaker below are the wild card teams.

TIE-BREAKERS
In the event that two or more teams have identical win-loss records at the conclusion of the season, and have played the same number of head-to-head games between them, the following tie-breaking system is employed:

1 - Overall regular-season record
2 - Head-to-head record
3 - Division Record
4 - Coin Flip

In the event that three or more teams have an identical overall record at the conclusion of the season, and have played a different number of head-to-head games between them, the following tiebreaking system is employed:

1 - Overall regular-season record
2 - Division Record
3 - Coin Flip

Example tiebreaker
Let's say Team A and Team B both finished with records of 100-60. Because they have the same record, the next tiebreaker would be head-to-head record. If the teams played each other twice, and Team A won both times, Team A would win the tiebreaker. If the teams played each other twice, and Team A won a week 5-3 and Team B won a week 6-2, the scores would be combined, and Team B would win 9-7. If Team A won a week 5-3, and team B won a week 5-3, they would still be tied (8-8). In the event that all of the above are tied, the final tiebreaker would be a coin flip.

Note: You will receive an e-mail describing how any ties in your league were resolved.

Scoring during the playoffs
Scoring during the playoffs works much the same way as during the regular season, with the object to win as many categories as possible. The difference is that each playoff round lasts two weeks, not one week (as during the regular season). As such the Games Started Limits are increased and you get two full weeks to accumulate stats in each stat category. By winning 5 or more of the 8 categories during each playoff matchup you'll guarantee yourself a win. In the event that two teams have the same win-loss-tie record at the conclusion of their two-week playoff game, the following tie-breaking system is employed:

NOTE: During the playoffs, once your matchup ends, the scoring is final and no scoring corrections will be applied.

    Tie Breaker for Playoff Games
    1. Higher seeded team

Playoff Schedule
In Round One of the playoffs, the division winner with the best win/loss record plays the wild-card team with the worst win/loss record; the other division winner plays the wild-card team with the better win/loss record. In Round Two, the winners of Game 1 and Game 2 in Round One (see table below) compete for the League Championship. Each round of the playoffs spans a two-week period. The remaining teams in each league compete in the consolation bracket.

LEAGUE CHAMPIONSHIP PAIRINGS
GAME ROUND 1
SEED VS. SEED
ROUND 2
MATCHUPS
1 1 vs. 4 W1 vs. W2*
2 2 vs. 3 L1 vs. L2

CONSOLATION BRACKET PAIRINGS
GAME ROUND 1
SEED VS. SEED
ROUND 2
MATCHUPS
1 5 vs. 6 W1 vs. W2
2 7 vs. 8 L1 vs. W3
3 9 vs. 10 L2 vs. L3

Final league standings following the second round of the playoffs

From the League Championship bracket:
*1st place - Winner of game 1, round 2
2nd place - Loser of game 1, round 2
3rd place - Winner of game 2, round 2
4th place - Loser of game 2, round 2

From the Consolation bracket:
5th place - Winner of game 1, round 2
6th place - Loser of game 1, round 2
7th place - Winner of game 2, round 2
8th place - Loser of game 2, round 2
9th place - Winner of game 3, round 2
10th place - Loser of game 3, round 2