NBA playoffs – Experts’ picks for the play-in tournament and first round

NBA playoffs – Experts’ picks for the play-in tournament and first round

What lies ahead in the NBA postseason?

The Brooklyn Nets and Cleveland Cavaliers kick things off tonight with the No. 7 vs. No. 8 game in the Eastern Conference play-in, followed by the 7-8 game in the Western Conference between the LA Clippers and Minnesota Timberwolves. (Here’s a refresher on how the play-in tournament works.)

Wednesday’s games feature the Atlanta Hawks vs. the Charlotte Hornets and the New Orleans Pelicans vs. the San Antonio Spurs in each conference’s 9-10 matchup.

Which playoff hopefuls will advance to the first round?

While four teams await their opponents, four series are set: Milwaukee Bucks vs. Chicago Bulls, Philadelphia 76ers vs. Toronto Raptors, Golden State Warriors vs. Denver Nuggets and Dallas Mavericks vs. Utah Jazz.

How will Joel Embiid and James Harden fare in the duo’s first series together? What impact will Luka Doncic’s calf strain impact the Mavericks’ chances?

Our panel of NBA experts is picking each play-in tournament game and first-round series.

MORE: The 75 things to know for the NBA postseason | Schedules


Kendra Andrews: net

Jamal Necklace: net

Nick DePaula: net

Nick Friedell: net

Kirk Goldsberry: net

Israel Gutierrez: net

Tim Legler: net

Andrew Lopez: net

Tim MacMahon: net

Bobby Marks: net

Dave McMenamin: net

Kevin Pelton: net

Omar Raja: net

Jorge Sedano: net

Ramona Shelburne: net

Andre Snellings: net

Marc J. Spears: net

Ohm Youngmisuk: net

Final tally: Nets 18, Cavaliers 0.

Kendra Andrews: Hawks

Jamal Necklace: Hawks

Nick DePaula: Hornets

Nick Friedell: Hawks

Kirk Goldsberry: Hawks

Israel Gutierrez: Hornets

Tim Legler: Hornets

Andrew Lopez: Hawks

Tim MacMahon: Hawks

Bobby Marks: Hornets

Dave McMenamin: Hornets

Kevin Pelton: Hawks

Omar Raja: Hawks

Jorge Sedano: Hawks

Ramona Shelburne: Hawks

Andre Snellings: Hawks

Marc J. Spears: Hawks

Ohm Youngmisuk: Hawks

Final tally: Hawks 13, Hornets 5.


Kendra Andrews: Clippers

Jamal Necklace: Clippers

Nick DePaula: Clippers

Nick Friedell: timber wolves

Kirk Goldsberry: timber wolves

Israel Gutierrez: Clippers

Tim Legler: timber wolves

Andrew Lopez: Clippers

Tim MacMahon: Clippers

Bobby Marks: Clippers

Dave McMenamin: Clippers

Kevin Pelton: timber wolves

Omar Raja: Clippers

Jorge Sedano: Clippers

Ramona Shelburne: Clippers

Andre Snellings: timber wolves

Marc J. Spears: Clippers

Ohm Youngmisuk: Clippers

Final tally: Clippers 13, Timberwolves 5.

Kendra Andrews: Pelicans

Jamal Necklace: Pelicans

Nick DePaula: Pelicans

Nick Friedell: Pelicans

Kirk Goldsberry: Spurs

Israel Gutierrez: Pelicans

Tim Legler: Pelicans

Andrew Lopez: Pelicans

Tim MacMahon: Pelicans

Bobby Marks: Pelicans

Dave McMenamin: Spurs

Kevin Pelton: Pelicans

Omar Raja: Pelicans


Jorge Sedano: Pelicans

Ramona Shelburne: Pelicans

Andre Snellings: Pelicans

Marc J. Spears: Pelicans

Ohm Youngmisuk: Spurs

Final tally: Pelicans 15, Spurs 3.


Kendra Andrews: Bucks in 5

Jamal Necklace: Bucks in 4

Nick DePaula: Bucks in 5

Nick Friedell: Bucks in 4

Kirk Goldsberry: Bucks in 5

Israel Gutierrez: Bucks in 4

Tim Legler: Bucks in 5

Andrew Lopez: Bucks in 6

Tim MacMahon: Bucks in 5

Bobby Marks: Bucks in 6

Dave McMenamin: Bucks in 4

Omar Raja: Bucks in 5

Jorge Sedano: Bucks in 4

Ramona Shelburne: Bucks in 5

Andre Snellings: Bucks in 4

Marc J. Spears: Bucks in 6

Ohm Youngmisuk: Bucks in 5

Final tally: Bucks 17, Bulls 0.

Kendra Andrews: 76ers in 6

Jamal Necklace: 76ers in 7

Nick DePaula: 76ers in 6

Nick Friedell: 76ers in 7

Kirk Goldsberry: Raptors in 7

Israel Gutierrez: 76ers in 7

Tim Legler: 76ers in 7

Andrew Lopez: Raptors in 6

Tim MacMahon: 76ers in 6

Bobby Marks: Raptors in 6

Dave McMenamin: 76ers in 7

Omar Raja: 76ers in 7

Jorge Sedano: Raptors in 7

Ramona Shelburne: 76ers in 7

Andre Snellings: Raptors in 7

Marc J. Spears: 76ers in 7

Ohm Youngmisuk: 76ers in 7

Final tally: 76ers 12, Raptors 5.


Kendra Andrews: Warriors in 5

Jamal Necklace: Warriors in 6

Nick DePaula: Warriors in 6

Nick Friedell: Warriors in 7

Kirk Goldsberry: Warriors in 6

Israel Gutierrez: Warriors in 7

Tim Legler: Warriors in 6

Andrew Lopez: Warriors in 7

Tim MacMahon: Warriors in 6

Bobby Marks: Warriors in 7

Dave McMenamin: Nuggets in 7

Omar Raja: Warriors in 7

Jorge Sedano: Warriors in 7

Ramona Shelburne: Warriors in 5

Andre Snellings: Warriors in 7

Marc J. Spears: Warriors in 6

Ohm Youngmisuk: Warriors in 7

Final tally: Warriors 16, Nuggets 1.

Kendra Andrews: Mavericks in 6

Jamal Necklace: Mavericks in 6

Nick DePaula: Mavericks in 6

Nick Friedell: Mavericks in 7

Kirk Goldsberry: Jazz in 7

Tim Legler: Mavericks in 7

Andrew Lopez: Mavericks in 6

Israel Gutierrez: Mavericks in 6

Tim MacMahon: Mavericks in 7

Bobby Marks: Jazz in 6

Dave McMenamin: Mavericks in 6

Omar Raja: Jazz in 6

Jorge Sedano: Mavericks in 7

Ramona Shelburne: Mavericks in 7

Andre Snellings: Mavericks in 6

Marc J. Spears: Jazz in 6

Ohm Youngmisuk: Mavericks in 5

Final tally: Mavericks 13, Jazz 4.


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