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How Does The NBA Play-In Tournament Work? Bracket, Dates, & Teams

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The 2023 NBA Play-In Tournament bracket, dates, and teams are featured here. How does the tournament work and which teams participate? Find out below. The regular season ends Sunday, April 9 and the Play-in Tournament starts Tuesday, April 11 and runs through Friday, April 14. Then, the playoffs begin on Saturday, April 15. Check out the standings and championship odds from BetOnline below.

How does the NBA Play-In Tournament work?

The NBA Play-In Tournament was first established in 2021. A total of eight teams compete in the tournament, four from each conference. Teams that finish Nos. 1-6 in each conference are guaranteed playoff spots. Nos. 7-10 in the standings will participate. These teams compete to determine the seventh and eighth-seeded teams for the playoffs.

For Game 1 of the tournament, No. 7 will play No. 8. The winning team will earn the No. 7 seed for the playoffs. Of course, the losing team will get another chance to qualify in Game 3. Next, the No. 9 team will battle the No. 10 seed to advance to Game 3. The loser is eliminated from playoff contention. Plus, the winner of Game 3 will earn the No. 8 seed for the playoffs.

Eastern Conference Standings

Team Record Odds
1.) Milwaukee Bucks 55-21 +280
2.) Boston Celtics 52-24 +350
3.) Philadelphia 76ers 50-26 +1000
4.) Cleveland Cavaliers 48-29 +3500
5.) New York Knicks 44-33 +6600
6.) Brooklyn Nets 41-35 +30000
7.) Miami Heat 40-37 +8000
8.) Atlanta Hawks 38-38 +20000
9.) Toronto Raptors 38-38 +25000
10.) Chicago Bulls 36-40 +50000
11.) Washington Wizards 34-42 +100000
12.) Indiana Pacers 33-44 +100000
13.) Orlando Magic 32-44 +150000
14.) Charlotte Hornets 26-51 +150000
15.) Detroit Pistons 16-60 +150000

Which teams are participating in the NBA Play-In Tournament?

The NBA Play-In Tournament determines the final two playoff seeds in the Eastern Conference and Western Conference. As stated above, Nos. 7 through 10 teams participate in the tournament. Shown above are the current Eastern Conference standings and championship odds for each contender. As of Thursday, March 30, check out our projection below for East and West teams.

Eastern Conference

  • No. 10 Chicago Bulls at No. 9 Toronto Raptors
  • No. 8 Atlanta Hawks at No. 7 Miami Heat

Western Conference

  • No. 10 Oklahoma City Thunder at No. 9 New Orleans Pelicans
  • No. 8 Los Angeles Lakers at No. 7 Minnesota Timberwolves

Western Conference Standings

Team Record Odds
1.) Denver Nuggets 51-24 +800
2.) Memphis Grizzlies 48-28 +1600
3.) Sacramento Kings 46-30 +4000
4.) Phoenix Suns 41-35 +650
5.) Los Angeles Clippers 41-36 +2200
6.) Golden State Warriors 40-37 +900
7.) Minnesota Timberwolves 39-38 +10000
8.) Los Angeles Lakers 38-38 +1800
9.) New Orleans Pelicans 38-38 +15000
10.) Oklahoma City Thunder 38-39 +50000
11.) Dallas Mavericks 37-40 +6000
12.) Utah Jazz 36-40 +100000
13.) Portland Trail Blazers 32-44 +150000
14.) San Antonio Spurs 19-57 +150000
15.) Houston Rockets 18-59 +150000

Furthermore, the Lakers (38-38) and Pelicans (38-38) have the same record. The Thunder (38-39) trail both teams by half a game. Los Angeles and New Orleans trail the seventh-seeded Timberwolves (39-38) by half a game as well. So, things could change in the coming week.

In the Eastern Conference, the Pacers (33-44) and Magic (32-44) will have to win out to have the best chance of qualifying for the NBA Play-In Tournament. Not to mention, the Hawks (38-38) and Raptors (38-38) must continue to win in order to hold onto their spots. They have a two-game lead over the 10th-seeded Bulls (36-40).

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James is a Basketball Insiders contributor. He earned his bachelor's degree in English and Creative Writing at Southern New Hampshire University. James enjoys watching sports and helping gamblers win money.

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