Amazingly, stunningly, after all that… the Brooklyn Nets are in it.
The Indiana Pacers lost to the Memphis Grizzlies 95-83 Wednesday night, finishing with a final record of 38-44. That’s the same record as the Brooklyn Nets after the Nets defeated the Orlando Magic 101-88 earlier in the evening.
Since the Nets own the tiebreaker between the two teams, having defeated the Indiana Pacers in their head-to-head matchup… .
THE BROOKLYN NETS HAVE SOMEHOW STAGGERED INTO THE LAST SPOT OF THE EASTERN CONFERENCE DESPITE BEING 13 GAMES UNDER .500 BARELY OVER ONE MONTH AGO!
By making the playoffs, the Nets avoid giving a lottery pick to the Atlanta Hawks, which likely would have landed 12th in this summer’s NBA draft. They instead will concede the 15th pick to the Hawks, while the Nets will pick 29th.
The Nets will also face the Eastern Conference-best Atlanta Hawks in the first round of the playoffs. At 60-22, the team boasts a multi-faceted attack not unlike the San Antonio Spurs, so much so that the NBA once honored their entire starting five of Jeff Teague, Kyle Korver, DeMarre Carroll, Paul Millsap, and Al Horford. That’s also not a coincidence: Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer is a disciple of Spurs coach Gregg Popovich.
The Nets will be heavy underdogs in the series, and most people would expect a sweep. But for now: The Brooklyn Nets, somehow, some way, made the playoffs for the third straight year.