Wednesday (April 11) will be the wildest night of the NBA season, and the New Orleans Pelicans will be right in the thick of things.
The Pelicans (47-34) host the San Antonio Spurs in the regular-season finale at Smoothie King Center in a game that will determine both team’s seeding heading into the postseason.
That will be one of several games Wednesday night that could shake up the Western Conference bracket before the playoffs begin this season.
The Portland Trail Blazers and the Utah Jazz (both 48-33) will be playing to determine which team gets the No. 3 seed. The Minnesota Timberwolves and the Denver Nuggets (both 46-35) will be playing to determine which team gets into the playoffs.
Oklahoma City (47-34) will also host the Memphis Grizzlies in a game that will impact their place in the standings once the playoffs begin.
The Pelicans clinched a playoff berth with a 113-100 win over the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday. It will be New Orleans’ first trip to the playoffs since the 2014-15 season.
Utah beat the Golden State Warriors (58-24) on Tuesday to eliminate the Pelicans’ chances of getting homecourt advantage, but there is still plenty on the line going into the season finale.
A loss would drop either New Orleans or San Antonio to one of the bottom two seeds in the West, which would set up a first-round matchup against the top-seeded Houston Rockets or the second-seeded Warriors.
Here’s a breakdown of everything that’s at stake heading into the final night of the regular season.
Wednesday’s relevant Western Conference games:
- San Antonio at New Orleans, 7 p.m.
- Denver at Minnesota, 7 p.m.
- Memphis at Oklahoma City, 7 p.m.
- Utah at Portland, 9:30 p.m.
Breakdown of the Pelicans’ scenarios:
Pelicans are the No. 5 seed if:
- They beat San Antonio and Memphis beats Oklahoma City. New Orleans would face loser of Portland/Utah game in first round.
- They beat San Antonio, Oklahoma City beats Memphis and Utah beats Portland. New Orleans would face Portland in the first round.
Pelicans are the No. 6 seed if:
- They beat San Antonio, Oklahoma City beats Memphis and Portland beats Utah. New Orleans would face Portland in the first round.
Pelicans are the No. 7 seed if:
- They lose to San Antonio and Oklahoma City loses to Memphis. New Orleans would face Golden State in the first round.
Pelicans are the No. 8 seed if:
- They lose to San Antonio and Oklahoma City beats Memphis. New Orleans would face Houston in the first round.
Will Guillory can be reached at email@example.com or 504.258.5344. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/WillGuillory. You can subscribe to our Pelicans Youtube channel here.