The New York Knicks won their 11th-consecutive game on Friday when they beat the Milwaukee Bucks, 101-83, and were finally rewarded for their efforts when the Indiana Pacers dropped a game to the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The Pacers' loss snapped a five-game winning streak and let the Knicks open up a 1.5 game lead for the second spot in the East, which will determine home court advantage should the two teams meet in the second round of the playoffs. The race is hardly over, though, as the Knicks have seven games remaining in the regular season to the Pacers' six.
That includes a head-to-head matchup on April 4, which will be one of four remaining games against playoff opponents for the Knicks, who are back in action on Sunday against the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Pacers play Saturday night at the Washington Wizards with three games remaining against current playoff teams in the East.
The full slate of playoff teams in the East is still not set after the Philadelphia 76ers beat the Atlanta Hawks to remain mathematically alive, sitting five games behind the Milwaukee Bucks with seven games to play. Philly's postseason hopes may not last long with three current playoff teams looming on the schedule starting on Saturday night at the Miami Heat.
Here is a look at the full Eastern Conference standings.
|New York Knicks||75||49-26||.653|