NBA play-in tournament 2024: Final matchups, rules, schedule, and more


The last day of the NBA regular season was filled with drama that shuffled the 2024 playoff picture. Four matchups in the 2024 NBA Playoffs are set, while the other four need to be determined by the play-in tournament.

The New Orleans Pelicans will host the Los Angeles Lakers in the Western Conference, with the winner getting the No. 7 seed. The loser of that game will play the winner of the Golden State Warriors at Sacramento Kings for the rights to the No. 8 seed in the West.

In the East, Joel Embiid and the Philadelphia 76ers will host the Miami Heat, with the winner earning the No. 2 seed and a first round series with the No. 2 seed New York Knicks. The loser of Sixers/Heat will face the winner of the Atlanta Hawks at the Chicago Bulls for the rights to the No. 8 seed. The play-in tournament will take place from April 16 to April 19, and then the 2024 NBA Playoffs will get underway.

Here’s are the play-in tournament rules and format, and an updated look at the standings every day until it’s set.

NBA play-in tournament 2024: Bracket and rules

Screen Shot 2024 04 14 at 5.45.05 PM

The best thing about the NBA play-in tournament is how easy the format is to understand. Here’s how it works:

The No. 7 seed plays the No. 8 seed in each conference. The winner of that game gets the No. 7 seed in the playoff bracket, which means a matchup with the conference’s No. 2 seed.

The No. 9 seed plays the No. 10 seed in each conference. The loser of that game is eliminated. The winner plays the loser of the No. 7 vs. No. 8 seed game for the right to the No. 8 seed in the playoffs. The No. 8 seed faces the No. 1 seed in the official playoff bracket.

NBA Playoffs standings 2024: Final seed order

After end of regular season

Eastern Conference — Finalized

No. 1 Boston Celtics 64-18

No. 2 New York Knicks 50-32

No. 3 Milwaukee Bucks 49-33

No. 4 Cleveland Cavaliers 48-34

No. 5 Orlando Magic 47-35

No. 6 Indiana Pacers 47-35


No. 7 Philadelphia 76ers 47-35

No. 8 Miami Heat 46-36

No. 9 Chicago Bulls 39-43

No. 10 Atlanta Hawks 36-46

Western Conference

No. 1 Oklahoma City Thunder 57-25

No. 2 Denver Nuggets 57-25

No. 3 Minnesota Timberwolves 56-26

No. 4 Los Angeles Clippers 51-31

No. 5 Dallas Mavericks 50-32

No. 6 Phoenix Suns 49-33


No. 7 New Orleans Pelicans 49-33

No. 8 Los Angeles Lakers 47-35

No. 9 Sacramento Kings 46-36

No. 10 Golden State Warriors 46-36

NBA play-in tournament 2024 dates and schedule

Tuesday, April 16

No. 7 Pelicans vs. No. 8 Lakers, 7:30 p.m., TNT

No. 9 Kings vs. No. 10 Warriors, 10 p.m., TNT

Wednesday, April 17

No. 7 76ers vs. No. 8 Heat, 7 p.m., ESPN/

No. 9 Bulls vs. No. 10 Hawks, 9:30 p.m., ESPN

Friday, April 19

East No. 7/8 vs. East No. 9/10, Time TBD, ESPN/fubo

West No. 7/8 vs. West No. 9/10, Time TBD, TNT



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