Celtics

Celtics

As we get closer to the end of the regular season, the need for dusting off the league’s rules regarding tie-breakers seems in order.

Heading into action tonight, only 1.5 games separate the No. 3-6 teams in the Eastern Conference with the Boston Celtics (43-30) right in the middle of all that congestion.

If the playoffs were today, the Celtics would be the No. 4 seed and would host fifth-seed Miami (42-30) Heat.

The good news for Celtics fans is even if the Celtics and Heat were to finish with an identical record, Boston would wind up with the higher seed . . . that is, unless the Heat finished in a tie with Atlanta as well for the best record in the Southeast Division.

That becomes a bit of a game-changer for Boston, who would drop down to the No. 5 spot with Miami and Atlanta being the No. 3 and 4 seeds, respectively.

And what about Charlotte?

They have the easiest remaining schedule among the aforementioned teams with six of their remaining nine games against teams with a sub-.500 record.

What if they rise up and finish in a tie for the Southeast division crown with Miami or Atlanta, along with the Celtics in the Atlantic?

Confused?

Well hopefully this breakdown of the NBA’s tie-breaker rules will shed some clarity on how this works.

 
TIEBREAKER BASIS WHEN TWO TEAMS ARE TIED:

·   (1A) Better winning percentage in games against each other

·   (2A) Division winner (this criterion is applied regardless of whether the tied teams are in the same division)

 

·   (3A) Better winning percentage against teams in own division (only if tied teams are in same division)

·   (4A) Better winning percentage against teams in own conference

·   (5A) Better winning percentage against teams eligible for playoffs in own conference (including teams that finished the regular season tied for a playoff position)

·   (6A) Better winning percentage against teams eligible for playoffs in opposite conference (including teams that finished the regular season tied for a playoff position)

·   (7A) Better net result of total points scored less total points allowed against all opponents (point differential).

TIEBREAKER BASIS WHEN MORE THAN TWO TEAMS ARE TIED:

·   (1B) Division winner (this criterion is applied regardless of whether the tied teams are in the same division)

·   (2B) Better winning percentage in games against each other

·  (3B) Better winning percentage against teams in own division (only if tied teams are in same division)

·   (4B) Better winning percentage against teams in own conference

·   (5B) Better winning percentage against teams eligible for playoffs in own conference (including teams that finished the regular season tied for a playoff position)

·   (6B) Better net result of total points scored less total points allowed against all opponents (point differential)