After an exciting night of basketball that included the farewells of two NBA legends, fans are ready for the postseason.
No more calculation and what-ifs, the seedings for the playoffs are locked in, and we can finally look forward to these exciting matchups.
Pistons vs. Bucks
The Detroit Pistons clinched a playoff spot Wednesday with a win over the Knicks. They will be facing off against first-seeded Bucks, owners of the best record in the league. That's not all, as Pistons star Blake Griffin will be coming off of an injured left knee.
Blake Griffin listed DOUBTFUL for tonight's regular-season finale. The only surprise there is he's not listed OUT already. Little chance what ailed him last night would fix itself before 8 p.m. tipoff at NYK.— Keith Langlois (@Keith_Langlois) April 10, 2019
Even without their injured guard Malcolm Brogdon, the Bucks should have an easy time in the first round.
Magic vs. Raptors
The Magic locked themselves into the seventh seed after a win over the Hornets on Wednesday night. It's their first playoff appearance in the last seven years. Unfortunately for them, they'll be up against a fierce Raptors team.
The Raptors are motivated to put up a championship run to keep Kawhi Leonard in Canada. These two teams should present an exciting match up in round one.
Nets vs. 76ers
The Brooklyn Nets have recovered from their awful trade with the Celtics from years ago thanks to D'Angelo Russell's breakout season. They'll face a 76ers team that has had problems defending quick guards, and might be without their star player.
#Sixers GM Elton Brand was asked if it’s possible that Joel Embiid won’t be ready for the playoffs. He responded “it’s possible.”— Keith Pompey (@PompeyOnSixers) April 10, 2019
If Embiid is out, the upset is very much in play. It'll be a fight between talent and effort with these two teams in the first round.
Pacers vs. Celtics
The Pacers still managed to secure the fifth seed without Victor Oladipo. They'll face an inconsistent Celtics team that has also taken a blow due to injury.
Source says that Marcus Smart waited on MRI because pain left him unable to undergo it before today. Confirmed a more serious oblique injury. He's out for Round 1 of the playoffs and team is gathering info to see if it’ll be longer than that.— Chris Forsberg (@ChrisForsberg_) April 10, 2019
Smart is a glue guy for the Celtics and they have fallen apart plenty of times this season. The Celtics have more talent, but the Pacers can easily upset them in the first round.
Clippers vs. Warriors
The Warriors are at the top once again, that's no surprise. What is surprising is that the Clippers managed to finish the season with 48 wins and a playoff spot. This team continued to win through multiple trades late in the season.
The Clippers probably won't be much of a challenge for the Warriors.
Spurs vs. Nuggets
This one has upset alert written all over it. The Nuggets had a major turnaround this season with Jokic running the show. Meanwhile the Spurs continued their greatness, making their 22nd consecutive playoff appearance.
The Nuggets have dealt with injuries all year and Gary Harris and Will Barton have struggled since returning. With so much playoff experience under their belt, the Spurs could ruin the Nuggets playoffs return.
Thunder vs. Trailblazers
This matchup is another potential upset, as the Blazers have had terrible injury luck to end the season. Their star guard CJ McCollum will be coming off of a knee injury, while Jusuf Nurkic is out for the season with a gruesome injury.
The Thunder will be very motivated to advance after two consecutive first-round exits. Against a shorthanded Blazers team, they have their dream matchup.
Thunder win, Nuggets win, Trail Blazers wins— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) April 11, 2019
Rockets fall to No. 4, OKC will face Portland in first round pic.twitter.com/6puBP7TZ7h
Jazz vs. Rockets
The Rockets will have a tough challenge against the feisty Jazz. The Jazz are known for their tough defense and it will be tested against a Rockets offense that'll bombard you with threes.
While the Rockets have been streaking due to Harden's incredible season, don't be surprised to see the Jazz thoroughly challenging them in this series.