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Memphis Grizzlies and Portland Trail Blazers Set to Battle for Eighth Spot in NBA Playoffs

Basketball

It’s the final week of seeding games in the NBA, and with the top spots all set, our attention is on the battle for eighth place in the Western Conference.

August 10, 2020
PHOENIX MERCURY/TWITTER
PHOENIX MERCURY/TWITTER

The GIST: It’s the final week of seeding games in the NBA, and with the top spots all set, our attention is on the battle for eighth place in the Western Conference.

Why’s that a big deal?: It’s a BFD because if the eighth-seeded team is ahead of the No. 9 team by four games or less, there will be a “play-in” tournament. The tournament is two games long, and for the No. 9 spot to move on, they have to win both games.

  • The play-in games are set to take place this Saturday and Sunday. All eight Eastern Conference teams have already been set, but in the West, the Memphis Grizzlies and the Portland Trail Blazers are neck and neck for the eighth seed.
     
  • Yesterday’s Grizzlies’ loss guaranteed a play-in series, but the last few games will determine the play-in matchup, with the San Antonio Spurs and Phoenix Suns still in the hunt. Anxiety-level 100.

So who’s definitely made the playoffs?: As we already mentioned, the Eastern Conference is set, with the Milwaukee Bucks unsurprisingly grabbing the top spot and the league’s best regular-season record. What, like it’s hard? Check out the full standings here.

What’s up in the WNBA?: Fans were robbed of a battle of the best on Saturday, when Seattle Storm star Sue Bird (of A Touch More fame) was forced to sit out of the matchup against Diana Taurasi and her Phoenix Mercury due to a sore knee.

  • Taurasi didn’t play the whole game either, exiting the game during the fourth quarter with a lower back and oblique injury. She’s since had a clear MRI and will be reevaluated ahead of tonight’s game against the Dallas Wings. Here’s hoping she’s good to go!