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NBA Play-In Tournament: Everything You Need to Know

Written by: Christian Jope
Updated April 6, 2023
12 min read
NBA Play-In Tournament
  • Eight teams compete for their place in the NBA post-season
  • The NBA Play-In Tournament will occur from April 11th to April 14th
  • The NBA Playoffs will begin on April 15th



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The NBA regular season is coming to a close, but it's not quite time for the NBA Playoffs. Eight teams, four from each conference, will compete for a place in their respective conference's post-season. Implemented in 2020, the NBA Play-In Tournament has provided some of the season's most exciting games, as the single-elimination format leaves no room for error.

Let's explain everything you need about the NBA Play-In Tournament and how it will work!

Which Teams Are Playing in the NBA Play-In Tournament?

Here's a preview of the teams expected to compete in this year's NBA Play-In. The regular season will end on April 9th, and the participating teams are subject to change.

Keep an eye on our expert odds and predictions for when the NBA Play-In Tournament begins!

Eastern Conference

  • #10 Chicago Bulls vs. #9 Toronto Raptors
  • #8 Atlanta Hawks vs. #7 Miami Heat

Western Conference

  • #10 Oklahoma City Thunder vs. #9 Minnesota Timberwolves
  • #8 New Orleans Pelicans vs. #7 Los Angeles Lakers

When is the NBA Play-In Tournament?

The 2023 NBA Play-In Tournament will occur between April 11th and April 14th.

How Does the Play-In Tournament Work?

The NBA Play-In Tournament showcases six games and involves eight teams, four from each of the NBA's conferences.

The top 6 seeds in each conference qualify for guaranteed playoff positions, while the teams that finish 7th through 10th participate in the Play-In. The teams that end with the 7th and 8th highest winning percentage during the regular season will have two opportunities to qualify for the NBA Playoffs.

Let's take a look at how the games will work:

  • Game 1
    • The 7th seed will host the 8th seed. The winner of Game 1 will earn the 7th seed in their respective conference's playoff bracket. The losing team will compete in Game 3
  • Game 2
    • The 9th seed will host the 10th seed. The winner of Game 2 will move on to compete in Game 3. The loser of Game 2 will be eliminated from the Play-In Tournament and playoff contention
  • Game 3
    • The loser of Game 1 will host the loser of Game 2. The winner of Game 3 will be awarded the 8th seed in their respective conference's playoff bracket.

Past NBA Play-In Tournament Results

Bold denotes a team progressed to the NBA Playoffs

2022 NBA Play-In Tournament Results

  • Participating teams
    • Eastern Conference
      • (7) Brooklyn Nets
      • (8) Cleveland Cavaliers
      • (9) Atlanta Hawks
      • (10) Charlotte Hornets
    • Western Conference
      • (7) Minnesota Timberwolves
      • (8) LA Clippers
      • (9) New Orleans Pelicans
      • (10) San Antonio Spurs

2021 NBA Play-In Tournament Results

  • Participating Teams
    • Eastern Conference
      • (7) Boston Celtics
      • (8) Washington Wizards
      • (9) Indiana Pacers
      • (10) Charlotte Hornets
    • Western Conference
      • (7) Los Angeles Lakers
      • (8) Golden State Warriors
      • (9) Memphis Grizzlies
      • (10) San Antonio Spurs

2020 NBA Play-In Tournament Results

  • Participating Teams
    • Eastern Conference
      • (8) Orlando Magic
      • (9) Washington Wizards
    • Western Conference
      • (8) Portland Trail Blazers
      • (9) Memphis Grizzlies
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NBA Play-In Tournament FAQ

Which seed is the most successful in the NBA Play-In Tournament?

Which NBA Play-In Tournament seed has the most wins?

Which NBA Play-In Tournament seed has the most losses?

When do the 2023 NBA Playoffs begin?

How to watch the NBA Play-In Tournament?

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Christian Jope

1484 Articles

Christian Jope is a writer, social media strategist, and data analyst. A Queen’s University Alumni, Christian is an author and social media strategist with Raptors Cage, while also working closely with MLSE and Canada Basketball through community-driven events.

Email: [email protected]

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