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Lakers Potential Play-in/Playoff Scenarios Going into Tuesday

Apr 14, 2024; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) dribbles against New Orleans Pelicans forward Zion Williamson (1) during the second half at Smoothie King Center. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers came into their final regular season game securing a much needed win. Going into Sunday, tensions were high as the Lakers had the possible outcome of dropping down to the tenth seed if they were to lose. Due to a great team effort with all rotational players locked in alongside the team’s star duo of LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the Lakers were able to capture the eighth seed with a crushing win. Davis left the game with a back spasm, but postgame interviews tell otherwise that the All Star will be good to go on Tuesday. The Lakers have several scenarios heading into the play-in tournament. The Lakers will face the Pelicans once again in New Orleans come Tuesday for the chance at getting into the playoffs as the seventh seed.

Lakers Potential Play-in/Playoff Scenarios Going into Tuesday


Lakers Beat Pelicans on Tuesday

If the Lakers are to secure a win tomorrow against the Pelicans, they will secure them a spot in the 2024 playoffs. This would be ideal as the Lakers have two best of one game scenarios to get into the playoffs. Winning would give them the seventh seed and a shot against the defending champion Denver Nuggets. A very tough first round. Last year, the Lakers met the Nuggets in the Western Conference Finals only to get swept. However, the team the Lakers had last year is much different from the additions they made this past offseason. For Lakers fans, facing Denver in a first round matchup is not ideal, but it takes the pressure off of potentially not making the playoffs.

Lakers Lose to Pelicans on Tuesday

With the Lakers losing tomorrow, they will still have one more shot at making the playoffs. This time it would be as the eighth seed, facing either the Sacramento Kings or Golden State Warriors. We have seen throughout the regular season, the Kings and Warriors being able to beat LA. Having the possibility of not making the playoffs is a worrying matter that shouldn’t be messed with when its a best of one game. The Lakers getting the eighth seed would mean a date with the Oklahoma City Thunder in the first round.

The Last Word

No franchise wants to put themselves in the Play-in Tournament. With all games being a best of one and the stronger possibility of missing the playoffs. The Lakers have seemed to dominate the Pelicans throughout the season. Crushing them during the semifinals of the In-Season Tournament and again to close the regular season. The Lakers have won three out of the four meeting against the Pelicans and look to do so on Tuesday.

The winner on Tuesday advances to the playoffs as the seventh seed and sets up a matchup against the team nobody wants to face in a first round. The Lakers seem to have no answer for Nikola Jokić, and the Nuggets are probably their toughest matchup. The Lakers cannot risk losing to the Pelicans and missing the playoffs completely. The question is if the Lakers are to win on Tuesday, will a matchup against the Nuggets be another sweep? Can head coach Darvin Ham change the matchups this year? Will the new roster additions the Lakers have be the answer they need? We shall see as these scenarios are all dependent on the outcome of Tuesday’s matchup against the Pelicans.


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