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How the 2023 NBA playoffs bracket is shaping up

Here’s a look at how the bracket is shaping up for the 2023 NBA playoffs.

Milwuakee Bucks v Denver Nuggets
Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks dribbles against Nikola Jokic of the Denver Nuggets in a game at Ball Arena on March 25, 2023 in Denver, Colorado.
Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images

Sunday update: The Clippers and Warriors both won their games, so they are in the playoffs as automatic berths. The Lakers are going to the play-in tournament. The Timberwolves defeated the Pelicans, so it’ll be Lakers-Wolves as the 7-8 West game and Pelicans-Thunder as the 9-10 West game. Here’s the full bracket now.


No. 1 Bucks vs. TBD
No. 4 Cavaliers vs. No. 5 Knicks

No. 2 Celtics vs. TBD
No. 3 76ers vs. No. 6 Nets


No. 7 Heat vs. No 8 Hawks
No. 9 Raptors vs. No. 10 Bulls


No. 1 Nuggets vs. TBD
No. 4 Suns vs. No. 5 Clippers

No. 2 Grizzlies vs. TBD
No. 3 Kings vs. No. 6 Warriors


No. 7 Lakers vs. No. 8 Timberwolves
No. 9 Pelicans vs. No. 10 Thunder

Saturday update: The 10 teams in the East are set with seeding, while the 10 teams in the West are also set with the top four seeds locked in. The Thunder are locked in as the No. 10 seed. The question now is what happens for seeds 5-9. The NBA has provided a massive combination of scenarios which you are welcome to look through if you wish to. We’ll have a more clear picture of what needs to happen after today’s games.

Friday PM update: The Heat and Raptors have lost, which means the 10 teams in the East are set with seeding also determined. The Nets are the No. 6 seed and will play the 76ers in the first round. The Heat and Hawks will meet in the first play-in game, while the Raptors and Bulls will play in the elimination game. The loser of Heat-Hawks will meet the winner of Raptors-Bulls for the No. 8 seed. The winner of Heat-Hawks will be the No. 7 seed.

The Grizzlies defeated the Bucks, so Memphis is the No. 2 seed in the West. Sacramento is the No. 3 seed.

The Mavericks have successfully tanked and are eliminated from play-in contention.

There are 11 games on Friday’s NBA slate, many of which have playoff implications for the 2023 postseason. While the Eastern Conference playoff picture is largely set, the seedings are still somewhat up in the air. In the Western Conference, there are seedings and teams left to be determined. Here’s a look at how the bracket is shaping up for the 2023 NBA playoffs heading into Friday’s action.

2023 NBA playoffs bracket

Eastern Conference playoffs

No. 1 Milwaukee Bucks vs. No. 8 TBD

No. 4 Cleveland Cavaliers vs. No. 5 New York Knicks

No. 2 Boston Celtics vs. No. 7 TBD

No. 3 Philadelphia 76ers vs. No. 6 Brooklyn Nets

Eastern Conference play-in field

No. 7 Miami Heat vs. No. 8 Atlanta Hawks

No. 9 Toronto Raptors vs. No. 10 Bulls

Here’s a look at the West playoff picture, which has plenty of question marks.

Western Conference playoffs

No. 1 Denver Nuggets vs. TBD

No. 4 Phoenix Suns vs. No. 5 TBD

No. 2 Memphis Grizzlies vs. No. 7 TBD

No. 3 Sacramento Kings vs. No. 6 TBD

The West play-in tournament is equally up in the air.

Western Conference play-in field

No. 7 TBD vs. No. 8 TBD

No. 9 TBD vs. No. 10 Oklahoma City Thunder

The Los Angeles Clippers, Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Lakers, New Orleans Pelicans, Minnesota Timberwolves, Oklahoma City Thunder and Dallas Mavericks are all fighting for the remaining spots. Two teams will get automatic berths, and one will be eliminated from play-in contention. The rest will go to the play-in tournament.