Playoff seeding watch: Bucks could finish sixth, seventh or eighth

Dec 19, 2017; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) drives for the basket against Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) during the first quarter at BMO Harris Bradley Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

With the season ending Wednesday, here’s one last look at what seed Milwaukee could end up securing in this year’s playoffs.

 

IF THE SEASON ENDED TODAY

Milwaukee would be in the playoffs as the No. 6 seed playing either Philadelphia or Cleveland. The Bucks would not have home-court advantage.

 

STANDINGS

For our purposes, we only care about seeds 6-8, which means where the Bucks, Heat and Wizards stand.

Here’s the how those three shapes up heading into Tuesday’s contests including game remaining (GR) for each team:

TEAM W L PCT GR
Milwaukee 44 37 .543 1
Miami 43 38 .531 1
Washington 42 38 .525 2

THIS WEEK

The three teams have four games remaining combined — and each means something. Miami gets to play a Toronto team which already has the top seed clinched. Likewise, the Wizards get the Celtics, who will be the second seed, and the Magic, who are “battling” the Hawks and Mavericks for positioning in the draft lottery.

Milwaukee: Wednesday at Philadelphia

Miami: Wednesday vs. Toronto

Washington: Tuesday vs. Boston; Wednesday at Orlando

 

THE BUCKS PERSPECTIVE

While Miami and Washington might be playing teams who don’t care about winning, Milwaukee gets to face Philadelphia, which is trying to earn the No. 3 seed over Cleveland.

With all the games, according to a release put out by the NBA, there are just five scenarios in which the Bucks do not get the sixth seed (and a date with either the 76ers or Cavaliers):

Milwaukee would get the sixth seed

— Bucks win (nothing else matters as far as Milwaukee is concerned if this occurs)

— Bucks lose, Heat lose, Wizards split or lose both

Milwaukee would get the seventh seed

— Bucks lose, Heat win, Wizards split their two games

— Bucks lose, Heat win, Wizards lose both

— Bucks lose, Heat lose, Wizards win both

Milwaukee would get the eighth seed

— Bucks lose, Heat win, Wizards win both

 

PLAYOFF ODDS

The website playoffstatus.com currently calculates Milwaukee’s playoff chances for each seed as the following:

6 – 61 percent

7 – 31 percent

8 – 8 percent

 

THERE’S MORE TO THIS STORY

The Bucks traded their 2018 first-round pick to Phoenix in the Eric Bledsoe trade. However, the pick was protected between 1-10 and 17-30. Currently, Milwaukee is at No. 17 in the draft standings, thus would retain the pick. But Miami is at No. 16 and Washington No. 15. Any flip-flopping with the Bucks dropping down, and that first-rounder is conveyed to the Suns.