Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Season Finale Playoff Scenarios, Plus a Ticket Giveaway

Posted By on Wed, Apr 17, 2013 at 8:49 AM

This weeks Flyer cover.
  • This week's Flyer cover.
There are a full 15 games on this last night of the NBA regular season, but only three are relevant to the Grizzlies' still unsettled postseason assignment:

Jazz vs. Grizzlies (7 p.m.)
Suns at Nuggets (7 p.m.)
Clippers at Kings (9:30 p.m.)

Here — because, why not? — is every possible three-game outcome and what it would mean:

Grizzlies win
Nuggets win
Clippers win
Playoffs: Grizzlies at Clippers (this is the most likely outcome)

Grizzlies win
Nuggets win
Clippers lose
Playoffs: Clippers at Grizzlies

Grizzlies win
Nuggets lose
Clippers win
Playoffs: Grizzlies at Nuggets

Grizzlies win
Nuggets lose
Clippers lose
Playoffs: Clippers at Grizzlies

Grizzlies lose
Nuggets win
Clippers win
Playoffs: Grizzlies at Clippers

Grizzlies lose
Nuggets win
Clippers lose
Playoffs: Grizzlies at Clippers

Grizzlies lose
Nuggets lose
Clippers win
Playoffs: Grizzlies at Nuggets

Grizzlies lose
Nuggets lose
Clippers lose
Playoffs: Grizzlies at Clippers

By the time the Clippers game starts, these scenarios will be down to two. If the Nuggets win, as is heavily expected, it will lock the Grizzlies into a match-up with the Clippers. A Nuggets win paired with a Grizzlies loss, which is a very possible outcome, renders the late game irrelevant. If Grizzlies and Nuggets both win the early game — the most likely scenario — then fans will be waiting it out to see where a Grizzles-Clippers series would start.

The question of the night: How much fight will the Kings muster in what could be — yet again — the final Kings game in Sacramento.

As for the Grizzlies' game, the Jazz come to FedExForum on a 9-2 closing run and need a win to keep their playoff hopes alive — though even that would need to be paired with a Lakers loss in their late game with the Houston Rockets.

I won't be doing a full Postgame Notebook for tonight's game, but will be tweeting from the game and will offer a shorter recap and updates on the playoff picture as things are settled.

Paper Preview: If you're in the city, pick up a copy of this week's Flyer — which will be distributed around the metro this morning — for my cover piece on the Grizzlies. In it, I wrap up the regular season, take the gauge of the team heading into the playoffs, offer a few potential post-season “X-factors,” and identify five team figures whose postseason performance could partially dictate their future with the franchise. This story will be online tomorrow and will be followed on Friday morning by a more detailed breakdown of the Grizzlies first-round series. For now, at least, that's the plan.

Ticket Giveaway: We've got two upper bowl tickets for tonight's regular season finale. (Note: Upper bowl.) You can enter here for a drawing for the tickets. Drawing will be held at noon and the winner must be able to pick up the tickets at the Flyer office by 5 p..m. today.

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