NBA schedule: Knicks meet Heat in potential playoff preview

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

The Knicks are on national TV again! Here's a schedule of Sunday's NBA action.

The Knicks will visit the Heat on Sunday (1 p.m. ET, ABC) in a potential playoff preview. New York currently trails the Hawks by one game for the last playoff seed in the East. The Heat are knotted with the Pacers for the No. 1 seed. Dwyane Wade will sit out the game, leaving the scoring load on LeBron James and Chris Bosh. Chris Andersen and Greg Oden are also out for the Heat.

Here's a quick look at the rest of the schedule.

GAMES THAT MATTER A LOT

Hawks at Pacers, 6 p.m. ET, NBA TV
Another potential playoff preview! If the Knicks win, Atlanta needs to win to stay ahead them. If Miami wins, Indiana needs to win to keep up.

Mavericks at Kings, 6 p.m. ET
Grizzlies at Spurs, 7 p.m. ET
Thunder at Suns, 9 p.m. ET, NBA TV

All three teams involved in the brutal West deathrace for the final two seeds are active. Dallas faces the easiest test, though the Mavericks have lost in Sacramento this season, and almost dropped one to the Kings at home recently. The Grizzlies and Suns might also be getting playoff previews against the West's best teams.

GAME THAT MATTER SOMEWHAT

Lakers at Clippers, 3:30 p.m. ET, ABC
Nuggets at Rockets, 7 p.m. ET
Jazz at Warriors, 9 p.m. ET
Pelicans at Blazers, 9 p.m. ET

The four home teams in these games are going to make the West playoffs -- seeding is all that's really at stake. The Clippers are almost assuredly staying at No. 3, but could make a run at No. 2 or get pushed from behind. Houston could make that push, or get caught by Portland. The Blazers need to worry about the chasing Warriors, too.

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