UTAH JAZZ

NBA Western Conference Playoffs Viewer Guide: May 9

May 9, 2021, 1:07 AM | Updated: 11:03 am
The Larry O'Brien Championship trophy for the NBA playoffs Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)...
The Larry O'Brien Championship trophy for the NBA playoffs Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – There are eight days left in the NBA regular season, and with the postseason fast approaching, every game has the potential to change the final seeding for the playoffs in the Western Conference.

With just a handful of games left for each roster, the top-10 teams in the West are almost set, even if their seeding is not.

With that in mind, and the understanding that each game will impact among these teams will affect the final standings, let’s look at the most important games left on the NBA’s regular-season schedule each of the eight remaining nights.

(This list will be updated as games gain and lose importance to close the season)

Current Standings:

  1. x – Utah Jazz: 50-18
  2. x – Phoenix Suns: 48-19 – 1.5 game back
  3. x – Los Angeles Clippers: 45-22 – 4.5 games back
  4. x – Denver Nuggets: 44-24 – 6 games back
  5. y – Dallas Mavericks: 39-28 – 10.5 games back
  6. y – Portland Trail Blazers: 39-29 – 11 games back
  7. y – Los Angeles Lakers: 37-30 – 12.5 games back
  8. Golden State Warriors: 35-33 – 15 games back
  9. Memphis Grizzlies: 34-33 – 15.5 game back
  10. San Antonio Spurs: 32-37 – 17.5 games back
  11. New Orleans Pelicans: 30-37 – 19.5 games back

x – Team has clinched an automatic playoff birth.

y – Team has clinched a spot in the West’s top ten.

Yesterday’s Games

Houston Rockets: 116 @ Utah Jazz: 124

The Utah Jazz clinched a top-two seed in the West with the victory over the Houston Rockets and take a 1.5 game lead over the Phoenix Suns with four games left to play.

Brooklyn Nets: 125 @ Denver Nuggets: 119

The Nuggets lost their final home game of the season to the Brooklyn Nets, but conclude their toughest stretch to close the year after facing the New York Knicks, Jazz, and Nets over a four-day stretch. They went 1-2 in the stretch.

With the loss, Denver has fallen 1.5 games back of the third-seeded Los Angeles Clippers with four games left to play.

San Antonio Spurs: 102 @ Portland Trail Blazers: 124

With the loss, the Spurs can finish no higher than the eighth seed in the Western Conference Playoffs.

The Spurs are just two games ahead of the New Orleans Pelicans for the final spot in the play-in tournament and two games behind the Memphis Grizzlies for the ninth-seed.

With the win, Portland is 1.5 games ahead of the Lakers for the sixth-seed with only four games remaining in the season.

Memphis Grizzlies: 109 @ Toronto Raptors: 99

With the win, the Grizzlies take a two-game lead over the Spurs with just five games remaining in the season.

Tonight’s Games: May 9

New York Knicks @ Los Angeles Clippers:

This is the Clippers’ final home game of the regular season before finishing the year with four consecutive road games.

With a win, the Clippers can move two games ahead of the Nuggets for the third-seed in the West.

Phoenix Suns @ Los Angeles Lakers:

The Suns can sweep the season series with a win over the Lakers, and move to within one game of the Jazz for the top seed in the West.

With a loss and a Clippers win, the Suns would own only a two-game lead over LA with four games left to play. The Clippers own the tie-breaker in the season series.

May 10

Utah Jazz @ Golden State Warriors:

This is the Jazz final road game against a playoff or play-in tournament team and a potential first-round NBA Playoffs preview.

Houston Rockets @ Portland Trail Blazers:

This is the Trail Blazers’ final game of the season against a non-top-four seed in the West before concluding the season on the road against the Jazz and Suns before returning home to face the Nuggets.

May 11

Dallas Mavericks @ Memphis Grizzlies:

The Mavericks would prevent the Grizzlies from being able to overtake them in the final standings with a win.

Phoenix Suns @ Golden State Warriors:

A potential first-round NBA Playoffs preview. The Suns would sweep the season series with a win.

New York Knicks @ Los Angeles Lakers:

This is the Lakers’ final game of the regular season against a team with a winning record.

May 12

Portland Trail Blazers @ Utah Jazz:

This is the Jazz final home game of the season and their final matchup against a team that will be playing in the playoffs or play-in tournament.

This game is also a potential first-round NBA Playoffs preview.

May 13

Portland Trail Blazers @ Phoenix Suns:

This is the Suns’ final home game of the regular season. This game is also a potential first-round NBA Playoffs preview.

May 14

Sacramento Kings @ Memphis Grizzlies: 

This is the Grizzlies’ final home game of the regular season.

Toronto Raptors @ Dallas Mavericks:

This is the Mavericks final home game of the regular season.

May 15

Phoenix Suns @ San Antonio Spurs:

This is the first game of a two-game series between the Suns and Spurs to close the season and a potential first-round NBA Playoffs preview.

May 16: Final Day Of The Regular Season

Memphis Grizzlies @ Golden State Warriors:

A potential matchup of two play-in tournament teams.

Denver Nuggets @ Portland Trail Blazers:

A potential first-round NBA Playoffs preview.

Phoenix Suns @ San Antonio Spurs:

The second game of a two-game series between the Suns and Spurs and a potential first-round NBA Playoffs preview.

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NBA Western Conference Playoffs Viewer Guide: May 9