Tag: Western Conference Playoffs

Mark Cuban

We’ve got your Western Conference playoff schedule here


I keep saying it because I believe it — one of the top four seeds in the West is going to get knocked off in the first round.

Not sure who, but the Dallas/Portland and Oklahoma City/Denver matchups are going to be tough ones. (Sorry Cuban, but you know us Internet reporters…) Well, tough for them, fun for you as a fan because you just get to watch some close, entertaining games.

When do you get to watch? We can help you out with that. Here is the Western Conference playoff schedule. The asterisk (*) means if the game is necessary. Ironically, all times listed are Eastern and we’ve told you the broadcaster where we know it.

San Antonio vs. Memphis

Game 1 – Sun April 17 at San Antonio 1:00PM (TNT)
Game 2 – Wed April 20 at San Antonio 8:30PM (NBA TV)
Game 3 – Sat April 23 at Memphis 7:30PM (ESPN)
Game 4 – Mon April 25 at Memphis TBD
Game 5 * Wed April 27 at San Antonio TBD
Game 6 * Fri April 29 at Memphis TBD
Game 7 * Sun May 1 at San Antonio TBD

L.A. Lakers vs. New Orleans

Game 1 – Sun April 17 at L.A. Lakers 3:30PM (ABC)
Game 2 – Wed April 20 at L.A. Lakers 10:30PM (TNT)
Game 3 – Fri April 22 at New Orleans 9:30PM (ESPN)
Game 4 – Sun April 24 at New Orleans 9:30PM (TNT)
Game 5 * Tue April 26 at L.A. Lakers TBD
Game 6 * Thu April 28 at New Orleans TBD
Game 7 * Sat April 30 at L.A. Lakers TBD (TNT)

Dallas vs. Portland

Game 1 – Sat April 16 at Dallas 9:30PM (ESPN)
Game 2 – Tue April 19 at Dallas 9:30PM (TNT)
Game 3 – Thu April 21 at Portland 10:30PM (TNT)
Game 4 – Sat April 23 at Portland 5:00PM (TNT)
Game 5 * Mon April 25 at Dallas TBD
Game 6 * Thu April 28 at Portland TBD
Game 7 * Sat April 30 at Dallas TBD (TNT)

Oklahoma City vs. Denver

Game 1 – Sun April 17 at Oklahoma City 9:30PM (TNT)
Game 2 – Wed April 20 at Oklahoma City 8:00PM (TNT)
Game 3 – Sat April 23 at Denver 10:00PM (ESPN)
Game 4 – Mon April 25 at Denver10: 30PM (TNT)
Game 5 * Wed April 27 at Oklahoma City TBD
Game 6 * Fri April 29 Oklahoma City at Denver TBD
Game 7 * Sun May 1 at Oklahoma City TBD

Playoff seedings: The West is still a mess

Boston Celtics v Miami Heat

In these uncertain times, we know a couple things for sure.

We know Chicago will win the Eastern Conference and take on the Indiana Pacers in the first round. We know Orlando will host Atlanta in another first-round matchup. We know the Spurs are the top team in the West.

After that, we’ve got no idea. Well, we kind of know some things in the East, the West is still as confused as Lindsay Lohan. So we’ll start our breakdown out East.

Eastern Conference

We told you already it’s Chicago vs. Indiana and Orlando vs. Atlanta for sure. The other two matchups are almost set in the East, but with the way teams in this conference go on losing streaks nothing is certain.

Miami’s win over Boston on Sunday means the Heat control their own destiny — win out on the road at Atlanta and Toronto and they are the No. 2 seed. At 56-24, they are one game up on the 55-25 Celtics. However, Boston owns the tiebreaker, so if the Heat slip and the Celtics sweep the Wizards and the Knicks, then Boston slides into the No. 2 seed.

Who might they face? The Knicks are one game up on the 76ers for the No. 6 seed, a lead they kept with their dramatic win Sunday night. New York also owns the tiebreaker. So, the only way the Sixers pass the Knicks is for New York to lose out — possible against Chicago and Boston — and Philly to win out (Orlando and Detroit).

Basically, expect Boston vs. New York and Miami vs. Philadelphia to be the other two Eastern Conference series, but it’s not set in stone yet.

Western Conference

We know the Spurs are the top seed. We know little else.

After dropping five straight, the Lakers have fallen into a tie with Mavericks for the No. 2 seed at 55-25, but the Lakers hold the tiebreaker. Oklahoma City, after beating L.A. on Sunday, is just one game back (54-26). The Lakers still own the tiebreaker over the Thunder, but the Thunder own the tiebreaker over the Mavericks. So, any of these teams can finish two-to-four.

The Lakers finish with the Spurs, then Kings; Dallas finishes with Houston, then New Orleans; the Thunder finish with the Kings, then Bucks.

The bottom half of the West is just as messy. The issue here is most teams are doing everything they can to avoid the Lakers, and if they can swing a date with Dallas they’ll take it.

Denver should be the No. 5 seed, they are two games clear of everyone, so just one more win (over Golden State or Utah) and they are locked in at the five.

Portland (47-33) is currently sixth and one-game ahead of Memphis and New Orleans, who are tied for seventh at 46-34. The real test here is the Tuesday night game between Memphis and Portland, a game that will go a long way toward deciding who finishes where. The tiebreak options between the three teams are too numerous to explain, but if the standings finish like this the Hornets would have the tiebreaker on Memphis. New Orleans has the tiebreaker if all three teams finished tied as well.

So there you go. By the end of Monday we may have a few more clear matchups set. Maybe.

Blazers have little trouble dispatching Jazz

Paul Millsap, Gerald Wallace, Wesley Matthews

It was a workman like performance by the Blazers. Not a lot of flash, they were just the better team and they never let up.

And they needed the win. It moved them half a game ahead of the Hornets for the six seed in the West. It matters — the six seed likely gets Dallas, seven seed gets the Lakers. Portland feels it has a shot against Dallas (and the Lakers would be happy to avoid Portland). Los Angeles is a harder road.

Portland was without Marcus Camby (sore neck) and Utah make a priority of not letting LaMarcus Aldridge beat them — he was denied and doubled and finished with 12 points on 6-of-19 shooting.

But now Portland has Gerald Wallace. He does a little of everything for this team and on a night they needed scoring he pitched in 29 (on 16 shots). He was getting inside and was still 5-9 on jumpers. Plus he had 8 boards. And defended like mad. He is a great fit for what Portland does and makes them much more dangerous in the playoffs.

The Blazers also got solid play off the bench from Brandon Roy, and Nicolas Batum had 21 points on 13 shots.

Devin Harris was back for the Jazz after a seven-game absence and looked sharp, but the Jazz are giving the kids their due now. And that leads to challenges. Gordon Hayward was barely a factor (he had 10 points, still). There were fourth quarter runs to make it a game, then the Blazers tightened their defense and the result was the Jazz taking rushed long jumpers against the shot clock. There is still learning to do.

Next up for Portland is the hated Lakers Friday night (and Los Angeles looks plenty beatable right now). A win helps them get what they want, which is to avoid those same Lakers in the first round.