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NBA clinching scenarios following Thursday’s schedule [UPDATE]

We go over clinching scenarios in both the Western and Eastern Conference, plus how the race for the 8-seed in the West is shaping out.

Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard dribbles during the second half against the LA Clippers in an NBA basketball game at HP Field House at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 8, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.  Photo by Kim Klement-Pool/Getty Images

The NBA season restart is moving along with the seeding round, which wraps up next week. We’ve got a lot of NBA playoff implications heading into Sunday’s massive 7-game slate. There are five teams involved in the tight race for the 8-seed in the Western Conference in action to end the weekend, including the Portland Trail Blazers, New Orleans Pelicans, San Antonio Spurs, Sacramento Kings and Memphis Grizzlies. Let’s take a look at the standings in the West and clinching scenarios.

Updated Western Conference 8-seed Standings

8. Portland Trail Blazers — 35-39*
9. Memphis Grizzlies — 34-39*
10. Phoenix Suns — 34-39
11. San Antonio Spurs — 32-38 0.5 GB
12. New Orleans Pelicans — 30-40 — 2.0 GB
13. Sacramento Kings — 29-41 — 3.0 GB

So let’s run down the schedule for today and scenarios:

Washington Wizards vs. Boston Celtics, 12:00 p.m. ET
Sacramento Kings vs. Los Angeles Lakers, 1:30 p.m. ET
Milwaukee Bucks vs. Memphis Grizzlies, 4:00 p.m. ET
Dallas Mavericks vs. Phoenix Suns, 4:00 p.m. ET (TNT)
San Antonio Spurs vs. Utah Jazz, 6:30 p.m. ET (TNT)
Portland Trail Blazers vs. Brooklyn Nets, 9:00 p.m. ET (TNT)
New Orleans Pelicans vs. Orlando Magic, 9:00 p.m. ET

Here’s a rundown of the scenarios for Thursday:

Update: The Trail Blazers defeated the Brooklyn Nets on Thursday to clinch a spot in the play-in tournament against the Grizzlies. Portland and Memphis will play at 2:30 p.m. ET on Saturday. Game 2 if needed will take place at 4:30 p.m. ET on Sunday.

The Trail Blazers and Grizzlies clinch a spot in the play-in tournament with wins OR losses by the Spurs and Suns.

Update: The Grizzlies beat the Bucks to clinch one of the spots in the play-in tournament.

The Suns can clinch a spot in the play-in tournament with a win over the Mavericks AND a loss by the Grizzlies or Blazers

Update: The Suns beat the Mavericks and now await the results of the Blazers game following the Grizzlies win.

The Spurs can clinch a spot in the play-in tournament with a win over the Jazz AND losses by the Grizzlies and Blazers.

Update: The Grizzlies and Suns both won, which means the Spurs are eliminated from play-in tournament contention.

Here’s a quick recap of what happened Tuesday:

The Grizzlies clinch a spot in the play-in tournament with a win OR losses by the Spurs and Suns.

Update: The Grizzlies were defeated by the Celtics and are in a four-way tie with the Blazers, Spurs and Suns.

The Blazers clinch a spot in the play-in tournament with a win AND losses by the Spurs and Suns.

Update: The Blazers have taken over possession of the No. 8 seed in the West with a win over the Mavericks.

Update: The Blazers and Grizzlies can’t clinch the play-in tournament after wins by the Suns and Spurs.

The Suns are eliminated with a loss AND a Blazers win.

Update: The Suns have defeated the Sixers on Tuesday.

The Spurs are eliminated with a loss AND a win by either the Suns or Blazers.

Update: The Spurs defeated the Rockets on Tuesday.

Here’s a quick recap of what happened Monday:

The Nuggets clinched the Northwest Division.

Here’s a quick recap of what happened Sunday:

The Kings and Pelicans were both eliminated from playoff contention after both teams lost on Sunday.

The Raptors defeated the Grizzlies to clinch the No. 2 seed in the East. Memphis was unable to clinch a spot in the play-in tournament.

The Thunder defeated the Wizards and prevented Denver from clinching the division.