Blazers Clinch West's No. 6 Seed In 2011 NBA Playoff Picture; Hornets', Grizzlies' Spots Undetermined

The Portland Trail Blazers provided some clarity to the bottom half of the West bracket for the 2011 NBA Playoffs on Tuesday, beating the Memphis Grizzlies in a game Memphis did not seem to want to win. That win locked the Blazers into the No. 6 seed, joining the Spurs at No. 1 and the Nuggets at No. 4 as the only set spots in the West. The Lakers and Mavericks will determine the order of seeds 2-4, while the Hornets and Grizzlies will figure out seeds 7-8.

If the Hornets beat the Mavericks on Wednesday, they will move to 47-35 and hold the tiebreaker advantage over the Grizzlies, putting New Orleans in the No. 7 spot. If the Hornets lose and the Grizzlies beat the Clippers, Memphis would become the No. 7 seed and New Orleans would slide to No. 8 (and a date with the Spurs). If both teams lose, New Orleans will be No. 7 and Memphis No. 8. In a sense, then, the Grizzlies control their own destiny.

Unfortunately for them, they won't know who is in the No. 2 spot when they tip off in L.A. unless the Mavericks lose. Hornets-Mavs tips off at 8 p.m. ET; the result should be in by the time Grizzlies-Clippers tips off at 10:30. If Dallas wins, Memphis still won't know who the No. 2 seed will be; the Lakers tip off in Sacramento at 10:30, as well, and would then need a win to claim No. 2.

Zach Randolph won't play for the Grizzlies either way. We'll see if Lionel Hollins gives Tony Allen another night off, and if he presents copious amounts of Hamed Haddadi with a straight face.

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