NBA playoff picture: Nets, Hawks, Bulls all keep pace in East blob


The Nets, Hawks and Bulls all won to keep pace in the middle of the Eastern Conference playoff picture. Brooklyn currently holds the No. 4 seed, two games ahead of Atlanta and two games behind New York and Indiana.

The Brooklyn Nets, Atlanta Hawks and Chicago Bulls all grabbed victories on Sunday to keep pace in the crowded Eastern Conference playoff picture. Two and a half games currently separate the three teams in the middle of the East blob.

The Nets barely got by the Phoenix Suns to stay two games ahead of the Hawks, who nabbed a big road win against the Milwaukee Bucks, the No. 8 seed in the East. Brooklyn is now just two games back of the New York Knicks and Indiana Pacers for the No. 2 seed.

The short-handed Bulls won their second straight game by defeating the Minnesota Timberwolves on the road. Chicago is currently the No. 6 seed, a half game behind Atlanta and two games ahead of the struggling Boston Celtics. The Celtics have lost four in a row, but they remain in the No. 7 slot because the Bucks have lost three games in a row.

And then there's the streaking Miami Heat, who are 12½ games up and on the verge of clinching the conference. Here are the full East standings:

Eastern Standings

Miami Heat 69 55-14 .797
New York Knicks 68 42-26 .618
Indiana Pacers 70 43-27 .614
Brooklyn Nets 70 41-29 .586
Atlanta Hawks 70 39-31 .557
Chicago Bulls 69 38-31 .551
Boston Celtics 69 36-33 .522
Milwaukee Bucks 69 34-35 .493
Philadelphia 76ers 69 27-42 .391
Toronto Raptors 70 26-44 .371
Washington Wizards 69 25-44 .362
Detroit Pistons 71 24-47 .338
Cleveland Cavaliers 69 22-47 .319
Orlando Magic 70 18-52 .257
Charlotte Bobcats 70 16-54 .229

More from SB Nation:

Sunday's March Madness TV schedule

How the NBA can compete with NCAA's one-and-done stupidity

An open letter to NBA nerds at the start of March Madness

Derrick Rose: "I just know I'm close"

Andrew Sharp: LeBron is our MJ

The best NBA draft prospects of March Madness

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