Final four

#finalfour

In American sports, the final four is the last four teams remaining in a playoff tournament. Usually the final four compete in the two games of a single-elimination tournament's semi-final round. Of these teams, the two who win in the semi-final round play another single-elimination game whose winner is the tournament champion. In some tournaments, the two teams that lose in the semi-final round compete for third place in a consolation game. The term "final four" is most often used in the United States and in sports heavily influenced by that country; elsewhere, only the term "semi-finals" is in common use. "Final four" first appeared in print in a 1975 article for the Official Collegiate Basketball Guide, whose author Ed Chay was a sportswriter for the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Chaye stated that the Marquette basketball squadron "was one of the final four" during the previous season's tournament. The National Collegiate Athletic Association pioneered the term and later trademarked it. The oldest and most common use of the term is in reference to the final four teams in the annual NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Championship.

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