The play-in tournament is here to stay.
The NBA Board of Governors is expected to put a permanent stamp on the play-in tournament, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. The tournament was voted on before the start of the last two seasons, but will now last permanently within the NBA.
The play-in tournament allows the ninth and tenth seed in each conference vie for a spot in the NBA playoffs.
When playoff time comes, the seventh seed will play the eight seed, in which the winner of that game will secure a spot in the playoffs, while the loser plays the winner of a game between the ninth and tenth seeds to lock the final playoff spot.
Some scrutinize the tournament because, in a sense, 66 percent of the teams in the NBA get a shot at making the playoffs (20 of 30 teams make the playoffs or the play-in tournament).
However, the ratings for each of the four games fair very well. While average viewership was lower in 2022 versus 2021 (2.45 million average viewers versus 2.96 million) the NBA still monetizes the play-in tournament with great effect.
Last season, the Chicago Bulls were the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs, eventually losing to the third seed Milwaukee Bucks 4-1 in the first round of the playoffs.
They shouldn't have to fret about making the playoffs for second straight year after returning all key players, including Zach LaVine to a max contract.