The return of the NBA is already a reality. The league announced this week that competition will resume on July 31st and that it will do so with an innovative elimination system that will end, at the latest, the second week of October. That being said, how do franchises that play a put in playoff?
The main thing is to understand how the competition system that the NBA has devised will work. First, the 22 franchises invited to Orlando they will end the regular season in a way with 8 matches per head.
This they will according to the remaining calendar they had, but playing only against the teams that are present in this final phase. Some franchises will be left with one or two games to complete these 8 games and it remains to be seen how the NBA will proceed in this case.
Once this “rush end” of the regular season is complete, we will have to keep an eye on qualifying. For the Playoff they continue to qualify eight teams per conference but in this case, if the ninth place is less than four games apart of the eighth, they will play a tie between the two.
When playing this crossing for the last place in the Playoff, both teams will play a game that, in case the 8th place winner wins, will seal their ticket to the post-season. If, on the other hand, it is the 9th team that wins, both teams will play a second match that will decide, definitively, the team that enters the Playoff.
The matter in East America is pretty straightforward. The NBA has invited to this final phase the eight teams that occupied the Playoff positions and, exceptionally, the Washington Wizards they were marching ninth.
Above the capitals, who until the NBA break had 24 wins and 40 losses, are Orlando and Brooklyn, both with 30 wins in the classification. For Washington it will be a difficult task but they must try to place themselves at least four wins of either team.
The Wizards will come to Orlando with a Bradley Beal franchise leader and knowing that they will not have John Wall. The base announced a few weeks ago that he was still at a good pace with his recovery but that he would not return for this end of the season. In front they will have Orlando and some Nets who will not count, as they have indicated, with Irving or Durant, both recovering from their respective injuries.
The fight in the West it will be much bloodier than on the other side of the country. When the league was interrupted the Memphis
Grizzlies they were eighth in their conference, with 32 wins and 33 losses. Below they have up to five teams, all of them present in Orlando, seeking to snatch the place.
Portland is the franchise that was ninth, with 29 victories at the time of the break. Those from Oregon are the only ones who have voted against the format proposed by the NBA, although it surely benefited them. The Blazers will almost certainly recover two key pieces: Jusuf Nurkic and Zach Collins.
Tenth place was occupied by New Orleans Pelicansthey had achieved 28 wins till the date. The franchise was one of the great attractions of the league with the return of Zion Williamson and for sure it will give a lot to talk about in Orlando. In terms of marketing, the NBA is interested in having Zion on screen, so the Pelicans will have to be alert.
Tied to 28 wins with New Orleans we have Sacrament. The Californian franchise started the year in one shot and then deflated. After the All Star break, they seemed to have recovered their rhythm but they lack a lot of experience and bench depth. Fox and Hield They will try to lead the Kings’ assault on eighth place.
There are still two more franchises in the shortlist and one is an old acquaintance. The Saint Anthony Spurs by Gregg Popovich They will return to play for getting into a Playoffs for the umpteenth time and who knows how many … enough experience to callus against any team. Five wins separate them from the Grizzlies.
Finally we have Phoenix, a young franchise with little experience but led by DeAndre Ayton and Devin Booker, two players with tremendous potential and capable of bursting any game. The Suns had 26 wins when the NBA stopped and they have the most difficult ballot of all. However, in such an uncertain and unknown scenario we cannot rule anyone out.