As this season of the NBA winds down, the world is looking forward to what should be a highly entertaining playoffs. With just one week remaining in the regular season, 15 teams have already clinched their playoff spot.
At the moment, the playoff picture for the Eastern Conference looks like this:
1. Indiana Pacers (55-26)
2. Miami Heat (54-26)
3. Chicago Bulls (47-32)
4. Toronto Raptors (47-33)
5. Brooklyn Nets (43-36)
6. Washington Wizards (42-38)
7. Charlotte Bobcats (41-39)
8. Atlanta Hawks (37-43)
This is not guaranteed, though, as each team has at least one more contest remaining. If Miami were to win both of their final games against Washington and Philadelphia, and Indiana were to lose theirs to Orlando, the Heat would take the No. 1 seed in the East. In addition, if Toronto wins its last two against Milwaukee and New York and Chicago loses two of its last three, these teams would swap places with each other. With evenly-distributed talent amongst the eight teams in the East, it appears to be anyone’s game to reach the NBA Finals.
As for the Western Conference, only 7 teams have clinched their spot at the moment, but that will be resolved later this week. Right now, though, the picture looks like this:
1. San Antonio Spurs (62-18)
2. Oklahoma City Thunder (58-22)
3. Los Angeles Clippers (56-24)
4. Houston Rockets (53-27)
5. Portland Trailblazers (52-28)
6. Golden State Warriors (49-30)
7. Dallas Mavericks (49-32)
8. Memphis Grizzlies (47-32)
In the hunt: *9. Phoenix Suns (47-33)*
One of the biggest stories of the year was how competitive the West is. With teams posting unbelievable records, it was tough to even make the playoffs. Two teams are still fighting for the eighth spot—Memphis and Phoenix. In the coming days, the Grizzlies have to face the Lakers, the Suns, and the Mavericks. The Suns will also play against the Kings.
The NBA Playoffs are set to begin on Sunday, April 20.