Eastern Conference playoff race still muddled


Six of the eight playoff spots in the NBA’s Eastern Conference have been clinched. However, only one seed has been established. Here’s a look at the playoff picture in the East going into Monday’s games:

1. Cavaliers 51-29*

Remaining games: at Heat Monday, vs. Raptors Wednesday

At stake: Will finish No. 1 or No. 2; Hold tiebreaker over Celtics; Clinch best record Monday with win and Celtics loss

2. Celtics 51-29*

Remaining games: vs. Nets Monday, vs. Bucks Wednesday

At stake: Can finish No. 1 with two wins and at least one Cavaliers loss; Can finish third with two losses as Raptors hold tiebreaker

3. Raptors 50-31*

Remaining games: at Cavaliers Wednesday

At stake: Can finish no worse than No. 3; Can finish No. 2 with a win over Cavs and two losses by Celtics.

4. Wizards 48-32*

Remaining games: at Pistons Monday, at Heat Wednesday

At stake: Locked into the No. 4 seed

5. Hawks 42-38*

Remaining games: vs. Hornets Tuesday, at Pacers Wednesday

At stake: Can finish No. 5, 6 or 7; Lock up No. 5 seed with one more win; Hold tiebreakers over Bucks and Bulls and to be determined with Pacers

6. Bucks 41-39*

Remaining games: vs. Hornets Monday, at Celtics Wednesday

At stake: Can finish No. 5, 6, 7 or 8; Trail Hawks by one game and lead Pacers and Bulls by one game and Heat by two games

7. Pacers 40-40

Remaining games: at 76ers Monday, vs. Hawks Wednesday

At stake: Can finish No. 5, 6, 7 or 8; Can clinch playoff spot Monday with win over 76ers and a loss by either Bulls or Heat

8. Bulls 39-41

Remaining games: vs. Magic Monday, vs. Nets Wednesday

At stake: Can finish No. 7 or 8; Can clinch a playoff spot Monday with a win and Heat loss; Also clinch by winning final two games

9. Heat 39-41

Remaining games: vs. Cavs Monday, vs. Wizards Wednesday

At stake: Can finish No. 6, 7 or 8; Must win remaining two games and have either Bulls or Pacers split remaining games

* - Clinched playoff spot

The Pistons, Hornets, Knicks, Magic, 76ers and Nets have all been eliminated



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