After months of hard work (or not quite as hard work, depending on the team) we’ve finally arrived at the conclusion of the 2019 NBA 2K League regular season. The playoff chase is still to be finished, awards are still to be determined, and there are five games left to wrap up over 150 games of regular-season play.
Here’s what to watch for on the final day.
One Final Playoff Berth Up For Grabs
There’s one final playoff berth to be had after Celtics Crossover Gaming (10-6) clinched the seventh spot with a Magic Gaming (9-7) loss on Thursday. There are three:
- Pacers Gaming (9-6)
- Grizz Gaming (9-7)
- NetsGC (7-7)
The Pacers have the inside track. One win over NetsGC—or even a loss and a subsequent NetsGC loss to Mavs Gaming (11-4)—will send them to the playoffs.
There’s a scenario in which the Grizz can get in, and their point differential (6.1) might actually get them in. If the Pacers, Nets, and Grizz all finish 9-7—meaning that Cavs Legion GC loses to 76ers GC (10-5)—then the tiebreaker should go to point differential, since all three will be 2-1 against other 9-7 teams (Magic included; all three defeated the Magic). Grizz Gaming’s point differential is currently far better than that of the other two teams: Pacers Gaming is at 1.7, while NetsGC is -3.4.
Games to Watch
There are three big games to watch tonight. The first can close the entire playoff debate in one fell swoop.
Pacers Gaming takes on NetsGC at 6 p.m. They’ll probably stick with their new-old lineup, with Matty at point guard, Swizurk on a sharpshooting build, and Ramo on a non-post scorer build. It gave them a crucial win over Celtics Crossover yesterday, and so there’s no reason to switch it up against NetsGC. Everyone still in the hunt will be rooting for NetsGC.
At 8 p.m., Cavs Legion GC faces 76ers GC in the second game with playoff implications. The Pacers, should they lose to NetsGC, will want the Cavs to win in case the Nets go 9-7 in the next game, but they’d be fine with the Cavs losing if NetsGC finishes 8-8. The Nets and Grizz need the Cavs to lose.
Then, at 9 p.m., the final matchup with playoff implications takes place. By then, things could be all over, but if things play out a certain way this game will determine the Pacers’ fate. If NetsGC sits 8-7 at this point, they can stay in the playoff race (though their point differential is a serious concern; they need to blow out teams by 30+) with a win and complicate things for the Pacers. The Grizz need them to win. One nice subplot to this game? It’s a coaching matchup between MPBA co-founders OGKINGCURT of NetsGC and LT of Mavs Gaming.
If the Mavs lose this game and the 76ers won earlier, the 76ers will leapfrog the Mavs as the 2nd seed and the Mavs will finish as the 3rd seed.
Award Voting Closes
The deadline to submit award votes for fans and league media is 11:59 p.m. tonight. Fans can vote on MVP and Play of the Year here. The league announced five finalists for each before last Friday’s games.