NBA Playoff Picture: Assessing The Carnage

When you have a 14-game night a week away from the end of the regular season, you are going to have a lot of rubble to clear. We're here to help. Below the jump, we break down the areas of the NBA playoff brackets in which there was some sort of shift on Wednesday.

EAST 4-5-6

The Celtics will be the No. 4 seed by virtue of winning the Atlantic, but their win over the Magic helped them stay just a half-game behind the victorious Hawks for home court advantage in a potential first-round match-up. The Magic's loss and Knicks' win allowed New York to climb within three games of No. 6 -- it's still a massive stretch.

EAST 7-8-9

The Knicks and Sixers each won to keep them in solid position to make the postseason. The Bucks blew a chance to keep up by losing to the Wizards(!). Milwaukee is now 2.5 games out, and hope is leaving the station.

WEST 3-4

The Pacific Division race between the Lakers and Clippers stayed impossibly tight as both teams won. Kobe Bryant is back Friday. This race should come down to one game.

WEST 6-7

The Mavericks had a huge Dirk-sparked comeback win, and the Nuggets fell to the Clippers. That put the Mavs back up a half-game for the No. 6 seed and a date with the Pacific champ.

WEST 8-9-10

Houston suffered another excruciating loss, and sits a half-game out of the No. 8 seed. Utah is in that spot on account of Phoenix's loss and the Jazz's win over Portland. What a race.

Here are the current brackets:


Bulls (1) vs. Sixers (8)
Heat (2) vs. Knicks (7)
Pacers (3) vs. Magic (6)
Celtics (4) vs. Hawks (5)*

* Hawks have home court owing to better record.


Spurs (1) vs. Jazz (8)
Thunder (2) vs. Nuggets (7)
Lakers (3) vs. Mavericks (6)
Clippers (4) vs. Grizzlies (5)

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