NBA playoff picture: Jazz vault past Lakers

USA TODAY Sports

The Jazz now hold a half game lead over the Lakers for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

The Utah Jazz reclaimed sole possession of the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference thanks to their road victory over the Golden State Warriors and the Los Angeles Lakers' loss to the Los Angeles Clippers. The Jazz currently hold a half game lead over the Lakers for that eighth and final playoff spot.

Utah has four games left, with two coming against the Minnesota Timberwolves and the other two against the Oklahoma City Thunder and Memphis Grizzlies. The Lakers have five games left, with four of those coming at home and three of those against West playoff teams that may rest players (Warriors, Spurs, Rockets). The other two games are against the New Orleans Hornets and Portland Trail Blazers. However, the Jazz do hold the tiebreaker.

At the top of the conference, the Oklahoma City Thunder fell one game behind the San Antonio Spurs with a loss to the New York Knicks. The Clippers hold the No. 4 seed, but the fifth-seeded Memphis Grizzlies are one game better and own homecourt advantage.

Here are the full West standings:


Western Standings

GP W-L PCT
San Antonio Spurs 77 57-20 .740
Oklahoma City Thunder 77 56-21 .727
Denver Nuggets 77 53-24 .688
Los Angeles Clippers 77 51-26 .662
Memphis Grizzlies 77 52-25 .675
Golden State Warriors 77 44-33 .571
Houston Rockets 77 43-34 .558
Utah Jazz 78 41-37 .526
Los Angeles Lakers 77 40-37 .519
Dallas Mavericks 77 38-39 .494
Portland Trail Blazers 77 33-44 .429
Minnesota Timberwolves 76 29-47 .382
New Orleans Hornets 77 27-50 .351
Sacramento Kings 77 27-50 .351
Phoenix Suns 77 23-54 .299

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