The NBA play-in tournament

NBA BUZZ - Bobby Motus (The Freeman) - May 5, 2021 - 12:00am

Beginning May 19 to 22 PH time, when the NBA regular season have ended, the league will have a playoff play-in tournament involving the 7th highest win percentages through the 10th in the two conferences to determine the final composition of the 8 post season teams in each conference.

The 7th and 8th ranked teams will have two chances to win a game to earn a playoff spot.  The 7th ranked will host the 8th ranked (the Seven-Eight game) and the winner gets the 7th spot in the conference playoffs. 

9th and 10th teams in each conference will have to win two straight games to qualify for the playoffs.  The 9th team will host the 10th team in the Nine-Ten game.  The loser in the Seven-Eight game will host the winner of the Nine-Ten game in a play-in, with the winner getting the 8th seed in the conference.

The following day, May 23, and up to July 23, the playoffs begin with the usual best-of-7 series.  This mini tournament will be disadvantageous to the lower ranked teams as they will have two added games compared to the top six teams in each conference which will have the luxury of a 4-day rest.  On the flipside of things, the format makes it more entertaining as the 7th to 10th teams will have to do their best to win two games. 

At this time without the play-in tournament, the playoff picture had been secured up to the 7th spot.  Stars will then have to be rested and teams will leisurely drift to the post season as one of the title favorites.

Basing on the current standings, the Eastern Conference have Philadelphia, Brooklyn, Milwaukee, New York, Atlanta and Miami occupying the 1st to 6th seed.  Boston, Charlotte, Indiana and Washington occupy 7th to 10th.  The Western Conference have Phoenix, Utah, Denver and the LA Clippers at the top four.  Dallas, Portland and the LA Lakers have the same win-loss records and are on the 5th to 7th spot.  Memphis, Golden State and San Antonio sits at 8th to 10th.   Stephen Curry and his Warriors will now have a chance to be in the playoffs after missing it last season.

Doing away with the play-in, it would only be Charlotte, Indiana and Washington battling for the EC’s 8th playoff spot while Memphis, GSW and San Antonio battle for the final 8th.

LeBron James is frustrated because his team is regressing and said that the play-in is s***.  Oh yes, it is.  With the play-in, they’re just two losses away before they can even begin their title defense.  Had the LA Lakers been on the upper half of the post season standings, he would be singing a different tune.

Disappointing will be the understatement of the year if we talk about how the Lakers had played the past several weeks, injuries to their super divas notwithstanding.  They are playing the Nuggets as of this writing and if Denver prevails, Bron will be in deeper s***.

With seven games remaining after the Denver game, the Lakers must win at least five if they want to avoid the crap that LBJ doesn’t like.

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