Last night, the Mavs won, the Blazers smashed the Jazz in Portland, and the Hornets snuck out of Sacto with a 1 point win.
The key here, of course, is for the Mavericks to get out of the #8 seed to avoid the Lakers. Well, as you can see, that is not going to be an easy proposition. The team closest to their range is the Utah Jazz, who are a very poor 14-22 on the road this season. But, what might save their bacon is the 2nd tie-breaker; conference record, where they hold a huge lead on the Mavericks. That means any tie with Utah goes to the Jazz.
Portland is a different animal, as the Mavericks hold the head-to-head tiebreakers, but with a 3 game lead with 8 to play, they would really have to collapse on this road trip they are about to head off on.
New Orleans has beaten the Mavericks 2 out of 2, with 2 more games ahead. They also hold the 2nd tie-breaker, the divisional record. So, all ties go to the Hornets.
Honestly, if you simply count the wins, you see that the Mavs seem trapped in #8 barring something pretty crazy in the final 3 weeks.
|4/3||MIN||@ OKC||@ GS||@ MEM|
|4/5||@ NO||@ HOU||UTA||PHX|
|4/7||-||@ MEM||@ MIA||-|
|4/8||@ DAL||@ SAS||PHX||UTA|
|4/10||@ SAS||LAK||@ DAL||NO|