Last Updated on May 17, 2021

The NBA is launching a full-scale play-in tournament for the playoffs for the first time in history and the matchups are incredible. LeBron James and the Lakers will meet Steph Curry and the Warriors in a winner-take-all game. What’s better than that?

Let’s take a quick look at the NBA’s schedule for the play-in tournament complete with odds and analysis. All odds via DraftKings Sportsbook.



NBA Play-In Tournament Schedule

Eastern Conference

  • No. 9 Indiana Pacers (-3.5) vs. No. 10 Charlotte Hornets (Loser is eliminated) — Tuesday, May 18 — 6:30 p.m. ET
  • No. 7 Boston Celtics (-1.5) vs. No. 8 Washington Wizards (Winner gets No. 7 seed) — Tuesday, May 18 — 9 p.m.
  • Loser Celtics/Wizards vs. Winner Hornets/Pacers (Winner gets No. 8 seed) — Thursday, May 20 — 8 p.m.


Western Conference

  • No. 9 Memphis Grizzlies (-3.5) vs. No. 10 San Antonio Spurs (Loser is eliminated) — Wednesday, May 19 — 7:30 p.m. ET
  • No. 7 Los Angeles Lakers (-6.5) vs. No. 8 Golden State Warriors (Winner gets No. 7 seed) — Wednesday, May 19 — 10 p.m.
  • Loser Lakers/Wizards vs. Winner Grizzlies/Spurs (Winner gets No. 8 seed) — Friday, May 21 — TBD



Play-In Tournament Odds

Hornets: +3.5 (-109) // +130 // O 229 (-112)
Pacers: -3.5 (-112) // -155 // U 229 (-109)

Washington Wizards: +1.5 (-110) // +102 // O 234.5 (-112)
Boston Celtics: -1.5 (-112) // -121 // U 234.5 (-109)

San Antonio Spurs: +3.5 (-109) // +135 // O 225.5 (-108)
Memphis Grizzlies: -3.5 (-112) // -162 // U 225.5 (-113)

Golden State Warriors: +6.5 (-110) // +215 // O 222.5 (-112)
Los Angeles Lakers: -6.5 (-110) // -265 // U 222.5 (-109)


Odds To Reach The Playoffs

Charlotte Hornets: Yes +450 // No -715
Indiana Pacers: Yes +320 // No -455
Boston Celtics: Yes -625 // No +400
Washington Wizards: Yes -500 // No +340

San Antonio Spurs: Yes +650 // No -1250
Memphis Grizzlies: Yes +390 // No -590
Golden State Warriors: Yes -500 // No +340
Los Angeles Lakers: -5000 // No +1200


Play-In Tournament Madness

This is the very first year that NBA fans are being treated to the play-in tournament. Technically, the Grizzlies and Trail Blazers played a play-in game last year in the bubble, but this is the first time the NBA is going with this specific format.

Essentially, teams that are in the seventh or eighth spot have two chances to win one game. The squads that dropped to ninth and 10th need to win two in a row to qualify for the playoffs.

They could not have asked for better matchups for the first year. LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and the Lakers are going to have to go head to head with a red-hot Stephen Curry in the first game. Curry dropped 46 points in a win over Memphis to clinch a spot as the eighth seed.

It’s old school vs. new school in the second Western Conference game. The Spurs are still a competitive squad, but they will have to figure out how to stop Ja Morant if they want to advance past the Grizzlies.

In the Eastern Conference, a decimated Celtics roster is going up against one of the hottest teams in the NBA, the Wizards. Russell Westbrook recently broke Oscar Robertson’s triple-double record during a remarkable second half of the season.

In the 9 vs. 10 matchup, the Hornets are trying to knock off the embattled Pacers. LaMelo Ball is the likely Rookie of the Year and Indiana is going to have to slow him down for a chance to advance.

The rest of the NBA is either resting up for the playoffs are starting up the offseason, but these eight teams are still scratching and clawing for a playoff spot. Don’t miss out on these historic games.



Odds To Win The NBA Finals

Take a look at the current odds to win the NBA Finals:

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