The NBA play-in tournament adds a fascinating twist to the end of the regular season 2022-23 and the start of the postseason. Teams were already less incentivized to tank games down the stretch due to the flat lottery odds instituted in 2019. Now that the top 10 teams in the standings will finish the regular season with at least a chance to make the playoffs, more franchises will stay in the mix longer.

Some players, like los angeles lakers star Lebron James and dallas mavericks star luka doncicthey were less than enthusiastic about the prospect of the play-in tournamentbut we should expect some heated contests as teams battle to capture the final playoff seeds in each conference, as we’ve seen in every season the NBA has used this setup.

Here’s everything you need to know about the 2023 play-in tournament, including the matchups, when and where it will take place, and how it works.

What teams are playing?

Here’s a look at the current projected game matchups as of today (through the April 6 games):

Eastern Conference

western conference

Here are the current play-in tournament standings for each conference.

Eastern Conference

The Raptors, Hawks and Bulls are all guaranteed a play-in spot. The Pacers, Wizards, Magic, Hornets and Pistons have all been eliminated from contention for the postseason.

western conference

The Jazz, Blazers, Spurs and Rockets have all been eliminated from contention for the postseason.

Complete NBA Ranking

How does the NBA play-in tournament work?

There will be six total games involving eight teams as part of the gate tournament, split between the two conferences.

Teams that finish between numbers 1 and 6 in each conference will be guaranteed playoff spots, while teams between numbers 7 and 10 in the standings will enter the play-in. Any team that finishes worse than No. 10 will be in the NBA draft lottery.

This is how the games will work:

  • Match 1 (Tuesday, April 11): The No. 7 team from each conference in the standings will host the No. 8 team, with the winner earning the No. 7 seed in the playoffs. Losing teams get another chance in Games 3 on Friday.

  • Game 2 (Wednesday, April 12): The No. 9 team from each conference will host the No. 10 team, with the winner going to Game 3. The losers are eliminated and enter the NBA draft lottery.

  • Game 3 (Friday, April 14): The losers of matchups No. 7 vs. No. 8 will host the winners of the No. 9 vs. No. 10, with the victors taking the No. 8 seed from each conference in the postseason. The losers of Game 3 enter the NBA draft lottery.

This means that teams with the seventh and eighth highest winning percentages will have two chances to win a game to earn a playoff spot, while teams with the ninth and tenth highest winning percentages need to win two games. in a row. to advance.

How important is seeding in the play-in race?

What games do I need to see?

These games could impact the play-in race during the final week of the season (games involving multiple adjacent play-in teams are listed in bold).

Friday, April 7

  • Heat at Wizards, 7 p.m. ET

  • Magic on Nets, 7:30 p.m. ET

  • Raptors at Celtics, 7:30 p.m. ET

  • 76ers at Hawks, 7:30 p.m. ET

  • Knicks at Pelicans, 8 p.m. ET

  • Bulls at Mavericks, 8:30 p.m. ET

  • Warriors at Kings, 10 p.m. ET

  • Suns at Lakers, 10:30 p.m. ET

Saturday, April 8

  • Nuggets on Jazz, 3:30 p.m. ET

  • Trail Blazers at Clippers, 4 p.m. ET

  • Timberwolves at Spurs, 4 p.m. ET

Sunday, April 9

  • Hawks at Celtics, 1 p.m. ET

  • 76ers at Nets, 1 p.m. ET

  • Pistons at Bulls, 1 p.m. ET

  • Magic in the Heat, 1 p.m. ET

  • Bucks at Raptors, 1 p.m. ET

  • Spurs at Mavericks, 3:30 p.m. ET

  • Jazz at the Lakers, 3:30 p.m. ET

  • Pelicans at Timberwolves, 3:30 p.m. ET

  • Grizzlies at Thunder, 3:30 p.m. ET

  • Clippers at Suns, 3:30 p.m. ET

  • Warriors at Trail Blazers, 3:30 p.m.

Complete schedule of the next NBA

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