NBA Postseason Play-In Tournament: Nets, T-Wolves Advance To First Round; LA, Cleveland Closer To Elimination

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On the first night of play-in tournament basketball, the Brooklyn Nets (7) and Minnesota Timberwolves (7) rose to victory and advanced to the first round of the NBA playoffs.

The first round of this year’s NBA postseason will be determined by a new play-in format where the seventh and eighth spots are decided by a series of games among teams ranked 7-10 in the standings.

Brooklyn defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers (8), 115-108, off valiant efforts from All-Stars Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving.

Irving shot the ball exceptionally in the first half: going 9-of-9 from the field for 20 points after two quarters. He finished with 34 points (team-high) and 12 assists to record a double-double at Barclays.

Durant played a complementary role to Kyrie’s impressive performance and made a great impact of his own: finishing with 25 points, 11 assists and a plus/minus of +16.

With the win, Brooklyn officially earned the seventh seed in the Eastern Conference.

The Nets will travel to Boston to face the Celtics (2) on Sunday.

Welcoming the Los Angeles Clippers to Target Center for the second primetime game of the night, the Minnesota Timberwolves narrowly bested LA, 119-114, to enter the postseason as the seventh seed in the West.

Minnesota’s dangerous backcourt, featuring Anthony Edwards and D’Angelo Russell, combined for 59 points on 20-of-39 shooting.

Still, no one on Minnesota’s roster basked in the big win like Timberwolves guard Patrick Beverley.

The 33-year-old played with the Clippers for four seasons (2017-2021) and came to Tuesday’s game with a revenge game brewing inside.

Beverley tallied seven points and 11 rebounds in 33 minutes of action.

He treated every contribution to the stat sheet like a game-winner, in a typically ostentatious outing for Pat Bev.

He was also fined $25,000 for talking smack to an official.

Once the clock hit double-zeroes, the NBA vet was in tears — celebrating the salt-in-the-wound loss that Minnesota had dealt his former team.

Minnesota will face Ja Morant and the Memphis Grizzlies (2) in the first round on Saturday.

Wednesday night will feature the second half of the play-in tournament as the Atlanta Hawks (9) take on the Charlotte Hornets (10) in the East and the New Orleans Pelicans (9) battle against the San Antonio Spurs (10) in the West.

The Clippers and Cavaliers will face Wednesday night’s losing teams for the eighth and final postseason spots on Friday.

via @NBA

Wednesday, April 13
Charlotte Hornets vs. Atlanta Hawks, 7 p.m. (EST)
San Antonio Spurs vs. New Orleans Pelicans, 9:30 p.m. (EST)

Friday, April 15
Hornets/Hawks (TBD) vs. Cleveland Cavaliers
Spurs/Pelicans (TBD) vs. Los Angeles Clippers

Saturday, April 16
Game 1: Utah Jazz vs. Dallas Mavericks, 1 p.m. (EST)
Game 1: Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Memphis Grizzlies, 3:30 p.m. (EST)
Game 1: Toronto Raptors vs. Philadelphia 76ers, 6 p.m. (EST)
Game 1: Denver Nuggets vs. Golden State Warriors, 8:30 p.m. (EST)

Sunday, April 17
Game 1: No. 8 (East) vs. Heat, 1 p.m. (EST)
Game 1: Brooklyn Nets vs. Boston Celtics, 3:30 p.m. (EST)
Game 1: Chicago Bulls vs. Milwaukee Bucks, 6:30 p.m. (EST)
Game 1: No. 8 (West) vs. Phoenix Suns, 9 p.m. (EST)

Follow along on Twitter: @AlejandroAveela

Written by Alejandro Avila

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