NBA Play-in tournament concludes with Lakers vs Nuggets.

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NBA Play-in Tournament Recap

The conclusion of the NBA play-in tournament on Friday saw two teams from each conference battling for the No. 8 seeds and final spots in the playoffs. In the Western Conference, the Los Angeles Lakers, led by LeBron James, secured the No. 7 seed by defeating the New Orleans Pelicans. This victory sets up a series against the Denver Nuggets, with the Lakers looking to avenge last year’s playoff sweep. On the other hand, the Pelicans will face the Sacramento Kings without their star player, Zion Williamson, who is sidelined due to an injured left hamstring.

Turning to the Eastern Conference, the Philadelphia 76ers clinched the No. 7 seed by defeating the Miami Heat. They are now slated to play against the New York Knicks in the first round. Meanwhile, the Heat will face the Chicago Bulls without Jimmy Butler, who sustained an MCL sprain in the game against Philadelphia.

Expert Picks and Predictions

Before the play-in games and first-round matchups unfold, NBA experts have made their picks:

  • Kendra Andrews: Pelicans
  • Jerry Bembry: Kings
  • Chris Herring: Kings
  • Tim Legler: Kings
  • Tim MacMahon: Kings
  • Bobby Marks: Kings
  • Dave McMenamin: Kings
  • Jorge Sedano: Pelicans
  • Ramona Shelburne: Kings
  • André Snellings: Kings
  • Marc J. Spears: Kings
  • Ohm Youngmisuk: Kings

The overall consensus among experts leans heavily towards the Kings, with 10 votes in favor of them compared to just 2 for the Pelicans.

Western Conference First-Round Predictions

As for the first round of the Western Conference matchups, here are the predictions:

  • Kendra Andrews: Nuggets in 5
  • Jerry Bembry: Nuggets in 6
  • Chris Herring: Nuggets in 5
  • Tim Legler: Nuggets in 6
  • Tim MacMahon: Nuggets in 4
  • Bobby Marks: Nuggets in 6
  • Dave McMenamin: Nuggets in 6
  • Jorge Sedano: Nuggets in 6
  • Ramona Shelburne: Nuggets in 6
  • André Snellings: Nuggets in 7
  • Ohm Youngmisuk: Nuggets in 6

The unanimous choice among experts is in favor of the Nuggets, with all 11 experts picking them over the Lakers.

Similarly, predictions for the Timberwolves vs. Suns and Clippers vs. Mavericks matchups are split, with a slight majority favoring the Timberwolves and Mavericks, respectively.

Eastern Conference First-Round Predictions

Turning to the Eastern Conference first-round predictions:

  • Kendra Andrews: Knicks in 7
  • Jerry Bembry: Knicks in 6
  • Chris Herring: Knicks in 6
  • Tim Legler: Knicks in 7
  • Tim MacMahon: Knicks in 7
  • Bobby Marks: Knicks in 5
  • Dave McMenamin: Knicks in 7
  • Jorge Sedano: Knicks in 7
  • Ramona Shelburne: Knicks in 6
  • André Snellings: 76ers in 6
  • Ohm Youngmisuk: Knicks in 7

Once again, the experts favor the Knicks over the 76ers, with a lopsided 10-1 split in favor of the Knicks.

As the NBA playoffs kick into high gear, these expert predictions set the stage for an exciting postseason filled with intense matchups and thrilling basketball action.

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Chris Jones

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