Because the race for 8th seed was so close in the western conference, the NBA invited 5 bubble teams sitting outside the 8th seed, including the Portland Trail Blazers, New Orleans Pelicans, Sacramento Kings, San Antonio Spurs, and Phoenix Suns. There will be 8 regular season games for the bubble teams to try and catch the 8th seeded Grizzlies. Whoever is in 8th after the 8 games will go to the playoffs, unless the team in 9th is within four games. Then a play-in will occur of two game between the two teams. The 9th seeded team would have to win both games to advance.

Below are the current standings, the remaining 8 game schedules, and my Blazersland predictions for how it will all play out in the western conference.


Western Conference Standings:

1st Los Angeles Lakers (49- 14, .778% )

2nd Los Angeles Clippers (44-20, .688%)

3rd Denver Nuggets (43-22, .662%)

4th Utah Jazz (41-23, .641% 4th)

5th Oklahoma City Thunder (40-24, .625% Lead HOU 2-1 in season series)

6th Houston Rockets (40-24, .625% )

7th Dallas Mavericks (40-27, ,597% )

8th Memphis Grizzlies (32-33, .492%

9th Portland Trail Blazers (29-37, .439% )

10th New Orleans Pelicans (28-36, .438%  – Lead SAC 1-0 in season series)

11th Sacramento Kings (28-36, .438%

12th San Antonio Spurs (27-36, .429% )

13th Phoenix Suns (26-39, .400%


Remaining 8 Game Schedules For WC Teams: 

Blazers Next 8 Gams: MEM, HOU, DAL, BOS, PHI, BRK, (UTA?, MEM?) LAL*, MIA or ORL* (Last two games in question as they would be the 9th games for Utah and Mem. It appears Portland will play the Los Angeles Lakers(who have the same schedule issues) for their 7th game and their 8th game against one of either the Orlando Magic or Miami Heat who would be playing their last game game against a team who has too already played 8 games.)

Pelicans next 8 Games: SAC, UTA LAC, SAS, MEM, SAC, MEM, ORL

Kings next 8 Games: NO, BRK, DAL, HOU, NO, SAS, LAC, LAL

Spurs next 8 Games: DEN, MEM, NO, UTA, UTA, DEN, SAC, PHI

Mem next 8 Games: POR, UTA, SAS, OKC, MIL, NO, NO, BOS

Suns Next 8 Games: DAL, LAC, DAL, IND, WAS. PHI, MIA, OKC




Memphis Grizzlies (32-33 8th) 

Projected Finish: 2-6 (34-39, .465% 8th)


Portland Trail Blazers (29-37 9th) 

Projected Finish: 5-3 (34- 40, .459% 9th)


New Orleans Pelicans (28-36 10th) 

Projected Finish: 4-4 (32-40, .444% 10th)


Sacramento Kings (28-36 11th) 

Projected Finish: 3-5 (31-41, .430% 11th)


San Antonio Spurs (27-36 12th) 

Projected Finish: 1-7 (28-43, .394% 12th )


Phoenix Suns (26-39 13th) 

Projected Finish: 1-7 (27-46, .369% 13th )


So basically, teams are going to finish where they are now, standings wise, Unless Portland wins 6 of their games, which is possible, but very tough, they will not make 8th seed, but will only be within a game of Memphis so they play- in will take effect. As 9th seed they will have to win both play -in games. Which they can.

The Grizzlies really have to win only two games or so to keep 8th unless the Blazers or Pelicans do better than predicted. The Pelicans would have to win 6 or 7 games to be in it. The Kings have been playing well down the stretch, but they have a tough schedule playing the Pelicans twice, along with Houston, Dallas, and both LA teams. They would have to win 7. It is not happening. The Spurs were already disadvantaged by having played less games, and now with Aldridge out their chances are done. Phoenix should have never been invited.


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