The NBA regular season may be winding down, but the postseason race is heating up. From now until the playoffs tip, we'll start taking a closer look at the daily action in the Eastern Conference. More specifically, teams the Washington Wizards are battling for playoff seeding. Check back daily for updates, news and notes pertaining to the Wizards' playoff push...
What you may have missed from last night in the Association:
*Rockets 96 Nets 105: Playoff berth punched. That's 14 straight home wins for Brooklyn. Since January 1, the Nets are 30-12, best record in Eastern Conference (h/t @espnstatsinfo)
- 1) Miami^ (51-22)
- 2) Indiana^ (52-23)
- 3) Toronto^ (42-32, 9.5 GB)
- 4) Chicago^ (42-32, 9.5 GB)
- 5) Brooklyn^ (40-33, 11.0 GB)
- 6) Washington (38-36, 13.5 GB)
- 7) Charlotte (36-38, 15.5 GB)
- 8) Atlanta (32-41, 19.0 GB)
- 9) NY Knicks (32-43, 20.0 GB)
- 10) Cleveland (30-45, 22.5 GB)
^ clinched playoff berth
*Miami clinched Southeast Division title, Indiana clinched Southeast Division title
News and notes that might be of interest for the Wizards: Since March 1, Marcin Gortat ranks seventh in the NBA with 10.9 rebounds and 10th with 1.7 rebounds while scoring 13.5 points on 52.7 percent shooting from the field. In two previous games versus Boston this season, 12 points, 12 rebounds, 2.5 blocks on 58.8 percent shooting.
*Celtics @ Wizards: We should witness the first meeting between John Wall and Rajon Rondo this season and the first since March 25, 2012. The previous five meetings have largely been in favor of the older of the two former University of Kentucky point guards. Rondo's side went 4-1 -- yes, he clearly had better teammates then. He averaged 12.2 points, 12.2 assists, 2.4 steals while shooting 53 percent from the field.
As for Wall, 15.6 points, 7.2 assists, 1.8 steals and 39.7 field goal percentage against Rondo. The Wizards' leading scorer should be plenty motivated seeing as he's coming off a bad beat on Monday and a brutal overtime loss to the Rondo-less Celtics earlier this season. Phil Pressey did work that night...
Rondo missed the previous two games while recovering from a knee injury. He's averaging 11.5 points and 9.5 assists in 26 games.
*Pistons @ Pacers: Indiana wins here even if Roy Hibbert and crew score in the 70's for the fifth time in six games.
*Nets @ Knicks: April Fool's Day is over so stating this matchup as one between arguably the hottest two teams in the Eastern Conference is no joke.
*Cavs @ Magic: Cleveland better rock against Orlando or its playoff hopes are going to roll bye bye.
*Bobcats @ 76ers: Charlotte PF Al Jefferson ranks fifth in the NBA in scoring (24.7) and ninth in rebounding (10.6) since March 1. Anthony Davis only other player to rank among top 10 in both categories in that span.
*Rockets @ Raptors: Toronto faces a Dwight Howard-less Houston squad that played on Tuesday.
*Bucks @ Heat: This game will be considered a failure if Miami isn't winning by enough to rest LeBron, D-Wade and Bosh for the entire fourth quarter.