Warriors

Warriors' play-in scenarios on final day of regular season

Warriors
Draymond, Bazemore, Steph celebrating

The Warriors know they will play a game on Wednesday, but heading into the final day of the 2020-21 NBA regular season, they don't know exactly where that play-in game will take place.

The first order of business for the Warriors is the regular-season finale against the Memphis Grizzlies at Chase Center on Sunday.

The Warriors know if they beat the Grizzlies, they will be the eighth seed in the Western Conference's play-in tournament and go on the road to play the seventh seed, which will be either the Portland Trail Blazers or the Los Angeles Lakers, depending on Sunday's events.

If the Warriors beat the Grizzlies on Sunday, they will have to wait a few hours before they know if they have to fly from San Francisco to Portland or Los Angeles. The NBA scheduled both the Blazers' game vs. the Denver Nuggets and the Lakers' game against the New Orleans Pelicans at 6 p.m. PT on Sunday, so there will be lots of drama at the very end of the night.

The winner of a game between the Warriors and Blazers or Lakers would earn the seventh seed in the NBA playoffs and face the second seed in a best-of-seven first-round series.

If the Warriors lose to the Grizzlies, Memphis earns the eighth seed in the play-in, while Golden State would become the ninth seed and host the 10th-seeded San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday.

The winner of a Warriors-Spurs game would then travel to face the loser of the play-in game between the seventh and eighth seed. The winner of that game on Friday would earn the eighth seed in the NBA playoffs and face the top seed in the Western Conference in a best-of-seven first-round series.

 

To prepare for Sunday's game against the Grizzlies, which has huge implications, the Warriors rested Steph Curry, Draymond Green and Andrew Wiggins on Friday against the Pelicans. All three starters will be back in the lineup for the all-important finale.

Curry and Green are used to pressure-packed playoff games, so they should be ready for the challenge Sunday against the inexperienced but hungry Grizzlies.

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A win Sunday gives the Warriors the easiest possible path to securing a playoff berth, with a road win Wednesday earning them a spot. But a loss to the Grizzlies means they will need to win two games, Wednesday and Friday, just to become the eighth seed.

Grab your popcorn because Sunday's action is going to be must-see TV.

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