What Divisions Are In The NBA?

Divisions In The NBA

The National Basketball Association (NBA) is North America’s premier professional basketball league. With 30 teams representing cities across the country, there are a variety of divisions within this major league sport. Currently, all 30 franchises are divided into two Conferences: Eastern and Western, with three divisions each: Atlantic, Central, and Southeast for the East, as well as Northwest, Pacific, and Southwest for the West.

The Eastern Conference has teams in Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, Washington D.C., Chicago, Indiana, Milwaukee, Atlanta, Miami, Orlando, and Charlotte. At the same time, the Western Conference consists of teams from Los Angeles, Phoenix, San Antonio, Houston, Sacramento, Utah, Denver, Portland, Oklahoma City, Minnesota, Dallas, Memphis, and New Orleans. Each division comprises five teams competing within their region throughout the regular season before competing against other divisions or conferences during playoffs and finals.

Eastern Conference

Eastern Conference
Eastern Conference In NBA

The Eastern Conference holds 15 teams, with three divisions, including the Atlantic Division, Central Division, and Southeast Division.


Atlantic Eastern Conference NBA

The Eastern Conference Atlantic division is made up of five teams from the East Coast of the United States. The division consists of the Boston Celtics, Brooklyn Nets, New York Knicks, Philadelphia 76ers, and Toronto Raptors.

These teams battle for a playoff spot each season in one of the most competitive divisions in professional basketball. Home to some of the best players in history, such as Michael Jordan and LeBron James, this division has seen more than its fair share of exciting moments.


Central NBA Conference

The Central Division comprises five teams: Chicago Bulls, Milwaukee Bucks, Indiana Pacers, Detroit Pistons, and Cleveland Cavaliers. These five teams are located in the Midwest region of the United States, except Cleveland, which is located in Ohio. As such, they make up a relatively small portion of the NBA’s total membership but remain competitive each season. The Bulls have won six championships since their inception, while Milwaukee and Cleveland have each won one championship in recent years.


Southeast NBA Conference

The Southeast Division of the NBA includes some of the most successful teams in recent memory. The five teams that make up this division have combined for a total of nine championships over the past 20 years.

The Atlanta Hawks, Miami Heat, Orlando Magic, Charlotte Hornets, and Washington Wizards are all part of this powerful division. The Hawks have advanced to two NBA Finals since the 1990-91 season and won a championship in 1958-59. The Heat have been a powerhouse for decades, winning three titles since 2006 and appearing in six consecutive Eastern Conference finals from 2011-16. Shaquille O’Neal led the Magic to the 1995 Finals, where they lost to Houston Rockets in four games.

Western Conference

Western Conference
Western NBA Conference

The Western Conference of the National Basketball Association is one of two conferences in the league. The conference consists of 15 teams and is divided into three divisions – Southwest, Northwest, and Pacific.

Northwest Division

The Northwest division includes five teams: Denver Nuggets, Minnesota Timberwolves, Oklahoma City Thunder, Portland Trail Blazers, and Utah Jazz. All five teams are located in the western part of the United States or Canada. The division has seen success from franchises like the Denver Nuggets and Oklahoma City Thunder, who have made deep playoff runs in recent years, and more consistent contenders like Portland Trail Blazers and Utah Jazz, who have both been to playoffs multiple times over their history.

Pacific Division

The Pacific Division of the NBA consists of five teams: Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Lakers, Phoenix Suns, and Sacramento Kings. These five teams compete against each other throughout the regular season to determine which team will be the division champion for that year.

Southwest Division

The Southwest Division includes five teams: the Dallas Mavericks, Houston Rockets, Memphis Grizzlies, New Orleans Pelicans, and San Antonio Spurs. All five teams have been long-standing members of the NBA since its inception in 1946. Each team in this division has had its share of success over the years; between them, they have won 21 division titles and 12 championships.

How Many Teams Make The NBA Playoffs In Each Conference?

The 30 teams competing in the NBA are divided into these conferences and divisions. Every year 16 of those teams make it to the playoffs from these conferences combined. Teams from each division have an equal chance to reach the playoffs as they compete against other teams within their respective divisions to qualify for a spot in post-season play.

How Do The Divisions Affect The NBA?

The divisions play a big role in how the NBA works and the success of each team. Each division has five teams that compete with one another for playoff spots in their conference. Divisional matchups are intense because they bring out rivalries between teams built up over time.

To make the playoffs, teams must finish as one of the top 8 seeds in their conference; however, winning a division title guarantees you at least one playoff spot even if you don’t make it within those eight seeds.

What does “Clinched Division” mean in the NBA?

Clinched Division describes when a professional basketball team has won their NBA division. Winning a division guarantees a spot in the playoffs and can be an essential milestone for teams to reach as they battle for an NBA Championship.

Teams must win more games to clinch their division than any other team within that same division. Clinching one’s division is certainly not easy and can require months of hard work from players and coaches. It usually signifies that the team is among the best in their conference, if not all, professional basketball.


What does “Clinched Division” mean in the NBA?
What Divisions Are In The NBA-Infographic


The NBA is divided into two conferences and three divisions. The Eastern Conference consists of the Atlantic, Central, and Southeast Divisions, while the Western Conference consists of the Northwest, Pacific, and Southwest Divisions. Each division has five teams that compete against each other in a season-long battle for playoff spots and championship titles. With some of the best players in the world playing for these teams, each game promises to be an exciting event for basketball fans.