Which teams have played in the WNBA Finals since 1996?


The WNBA Finals mark the conclusion of the league's postseason and the Las Vegas Aces have closed it out in style. The Aces snagged the franchise's first-ever WNBA championship, defeating the Connecticut Sun 78-71 on Sunday night to grab the final series 3-1.

After celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2021 and now transitioning into the next quarter century, the WNBA has seen a rich tradition in the finals throughout the years.

The Seattle Storm hold an undefeated 4-0 record in the WNBA Finals, while the New York Liberty and Los Angeles Sparks have won multiple WNBA titles. All four teams that were in this year's 2022 WNBA semifinals have reached the Finals before, and each franchise has had a varying degree of success in their respective histories.

Here’s a look back at past results of the WNBA Finals:

What team has the most appearances in the WNBA Finals?

The Minnesota Lynx enjoyed a stretch of dominance throughout the 2010s, making a league-record six appearances in seven years and winning four championships. 

Next up are the Los Angeles Sparks and the Phoenix Mercury who have five appearances apiece. Four teams -- the Houston Comets, New York Liberty, Detroit Shock and Seattle Storm -- have made four Finals appearances. 

What team has the most WNBA championships?

Four teams have four WNBA trophies -- the Houston Comets, New York Liberty, Phoenix Mercury and Minnesota Lynx. The Los Angeles Sparks and the Detroit Shock each have three wins making them the only other teams with multiple WNBA championships.

What is the most common WNBA Finals matchup?

The Houston Comets and the New York Liberty technically own this title, but it’s been over two decades since either team made the Finals. 

The two teams faced off three of the first four years in the league’s postseason tournament; however, neither team has made the Finals since 2002. 

The Comets dissolved in 2008, while the Liberty have remained a mainstay of the WNBA. They entered the postseason No. 7 in the bracket, but lost 2-1 to the Chicago Sky in the opening round of the 2022 playoffs.

WNBA Finals results throughout the years 

1997: Houston Comets def. New York Liberty 1-0
1998: Houston Comets def. Phoenix Mercury 2-1
1999: Houston Comets def. New York Liberty 2-1
2000: Houston Comets def. New York Liberty 2-0
2001: Los Angeles Sparks def. Charlotte Sting 2-0
2002: Los Angeles Sparks def. New York Liberty 2-0
2003: Detroit Shock def. Los Angeles Sparks 2-1
2004: Seattle Storm def. Connecticut Sun 2-1
2005: Sacramento Monarchs def. Connecticut Sun 3-1
2006: Detroit Shock def. Sacramento Monarchs 3-2
2007: Phoenix Mercury def. Detroit Shock 3-2
2008: Detroit Shock def. San Antonio Silver Stars 3-0
2009: Phoenix Mercury def. Indiana Fever 3-2
2010: Seattle Storm def. Atlanta Dream 3-0
2011: Minnesota Lynx def. Atlanta Dream 3-0
2012: Indiana Fever def. Minnesota Lynx 3-1
2013: Minnesota Lynx def. Atlanta Dream 3-0
2014: Phoenix Mercury def. Chicago Sky 3-0
2015: Minnesota Lynx def. Indiana Fever 3-2
2016: Los Angeles Sparks def. Minnesota Lynx 3-2
2017: Minnesota Lynx def. Los Angeles Sparks 3-2
2018: Seattle Storm def. Washington Mystics 3-0 
2019: Washington Mystics def. Connecticut Sun 3-2
2020: Seattle Storm def. Las Vegas Aces 3-0
2021: Chicago Sky def. Phoenix Mercury 3-1
2022: Las Vegas Aces def. Connecticut Sun 3-1

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