NBA Playoffs – How the 1st round rules work

The regular season of the NBA is officially done and public is getting ready for the real excitement as the playoffs are just right behind the corner. The best 8 teams from both East and West Conferences respectively will battle to take down Milwaukee Bucks from the throne. However Milwaukee Bucks will still have the chance to defend the throne as they are one of the biggest favorites to win the championship again after finishing third at the East.

See also : How do the NBA Playoffs Work?

What is the Play-In Tournament?

The top teams in each of the Conferences are ranked from 1-10 based to their regular season records. I Last year the NBA changed the old format by introducing the play-in tournament in which teams 7-10 complete the two final spots at the conference in a series of single-elimination games.  For the 7th and 8th ranked team, it is a “win and in” with the loser of that game playing the winner of the game between 9th and 10th ranked team in the conference.

The Play-In Tournament already started as we got the 7th seed confirmed at both conferences after Brooklyn beating the Cavaliers at the East while Minnesota Timberwolves secured the 7th seed after a win against L.A. Clippers. Tonight the Play-In Tournament continues with 9th and 10th seeded teams face each other, both East and West Conference. The top six teams in each conference will have a week to rest and prepare for the postseason and this is crucial rest before the finish of the season.

Right after the Play-In Tournament ends and we get the best 8 teams in each conference, NBA playoffs are back to the traditional draw in which every team gets opponent depending on which seed teams got during regular season. This is well known method already as it was used during the past all of the time.

Eastern Conference playoffs picture

  • 1 MIAMI HEAT
  • 2 BOSTON CELTICS
  • 3 MILWAUKEE BUCKS
  • 4 PHILADELPHIA 76ERS
  • 5 TORONTO RAPTORS
  • 6 CHICAGO BULLS
  • 7 BROOKLYN NETS
  • 8 CLEVELAND CAVALIERS VS WINNER OF ATLANTA HAWKS VS CHARLOTTE HORNETS

It is everything known at the East except the opponent Miami Heat gets. This will be known Friday evening when the Play-In tournament finishes.  Boston Celtics will take on the “dark horse” Brooklyn Nets, while the current Champion and the biggest favorite to go to the finals again from the East, Milwaukee Bucks will battle the full of talent Chicago Bulls. Philadelphia gets Toronto Raptors and each of the first 4 teams is starting the series of best to 4 with a home advantage because of the better score during the regular season.

Western Conference playoffs picture

  • 1 PHOENIX SUNS
  • 2 MEMPHIS GRIZZLIES
  • 3 GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS
  • 4 DALLAS MAVERICKS
  • 5 UTAH JAZZ
  • 6 DENVER NUGGETS
  • 7 MINNESOTA TIMBERWOLVES
  • 8 LOS ANGELES CLIPPERS VS WINNER OF NEW ORLEANS PELICANS VS SAN ANTONIO SPURS

Same here the only unknown in this conference is just the opponent the Suns get. Minnesota confirmed the 7th place after beating the Clippers for at the Play-In Tournament, and goes straight to the young and talented team of Memphis Grizzlies. Golden State and the splash brothers will take on Denver Nuggets and the Mavericks will get the strong Jazz as an opponent. Home courts are also as well in favor to the first 4 seeded teams and they will be opening the playoffs in front of their supporters.

See all our daily picks and parlays for the NBA Playoffs and our preview of the second Round of NBA Playoffs

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