Timberwolves NBA playoff seeding scenarios

Wrapping up the 2018 National Basketball Association season is total insanity, particularly in the Western Conference.

The Western Conference comes down to two teams and maybe one sleeper. The Warriors' championship hopes will increase if and when Curry returns to the lineup. They needed overtime to beat the Nuggets and get into the postseason.

Cleveland will host IN at 3:30 p.m. Sunday, as LeBron James tries to lead the Cavs to its fourth straight NBA Finals appearance.

Blazers: No. 3 with a win, but could finish behind the Spurs or Thunder with a loss.

Although the Sixers gained the upper hand in the head-to-head battle Friday with a thrilling home victory, they are only one game in front of the Cavs entering Wednesday's action.

The Jazz are in a great situation. Philadelphia routed Milwaukee to clinch the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs.

While San Antonio can certainly win its game, the tanking Memphis Grizzlies have to defeat the OKC Thunder. And the Jazz-Blazers game will only matter if the Thunder manage to win their own.

The Pelicans will play the Portland Trail Blazers in the postseason this year. Leonard got hurt when he stepped on Pachulia on the landing; he and the Spurs haven't been the same since. San Antonio will capture No. 6 with a win and a Trail Blazers win and a Thunder win.

The reason for all the uncertainty is that seeds 5-9 are all separated by only one game.

The Thunder struggled in the early part of the schedule until they figured out how the ideal role of Carmelo Anthony. Triple-double machine Russell Westbrook, future hall of famer Carmelo Anthony, and star Paul George will put up a fight. Had the Thunder lost to Memphis, Utah would have been the No. 4 seed and faced the Pelicans.

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The Minnesota Timberwolves have the pieces to match other powerhouse teams in the Western Conference. Now led by young role players and rookie Jayson Tatum they should take down the Miami Heat. TV information for potential Games 5-7 is still to be determined.

If New Orleans and Oklahoma City both win Wednesday, the Wolves will get the No. 8 seed, drawing a first-round series with Houston, which is 4-0 vs. the Wolves this season. The Timberwolves will not be in the playoffs with a loss.

"They just made the plays at the end", Denver's Will Barton said of the Timberwolves.

The schedule for the first-round matchups will be updated when announced.

The Eastern Conference doesn't have as many insane scenarios. The first two seeds are locked but the remaining are to be known tonight. Just before the season started, who could have thought the Raptors will be on top?

Casey says the Raptors have been mindful of minutes all season for the team's "high-usage" players like Lowry and DeRozan. Wizards 2. Celtics vs. 7. And the Celtics will draw the Heat in the first round. But the Cleveland Cavaliers can jump to the three seed with a win on Wednesday against the New York Knicks, and a 76ers' loss to the Bucks. Cleveland has had a lot of problems this season but IN shouldn't be one, especially with playoff LeBron James. With an abrupt changes in the middle of the season, James managed to play along with newcomers in the system. Portland and Utah will play for the No. 3 seed in the West, in one of the few cut-and-dry matchups. The playoffs are when you can finally tell what teams are real and what teams are fake. The Cleveland Cavaliers will take on the Indiana Pacers.

The small forward averaged 13.5 points, 6.6 rebounds and 2.0 assists per game - all career highs - in 73 games during the 2017-18 season. The 76ers are going into the playoffs on a 16-game winning streak.

Miami got this spot by outlasting the Raptors in overtime and watching the Bucks decide not to show up against the 76ers.

Directly beneath the Raptors and Celtics is a battle for third place between the Philadelphia 76ers and Cleveland Cavaliers.

The Washington Wizards understand that they rely on John Wall to carry them into the playoffs and to go deeper in the second round. The eight seed Washington Wizards will give Toronto trouble.


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