When do NBA Playoffs start? Key dates for NBA Playoffs schedule

CJ McCollum, New Orleans Pelicans (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
CJ McCollum, New Orleans Pelicans (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

Now that the All-Star break is behind us, everyone that didn’t blow things up during the deadline now has their eyes toward the postseason. Fortunately for us, the New Orleans Pelicans are one of those teams.

As it stands, the Pelicans are tenth in the loaded Western Conference with a record of 30-31. If the playoffs started today, they would be in the play-in tournament. However, the playoffs don’t start today, and with them being only 2.5 games behind the fourth seed and 1.5 games ahead of the 13th seed, there is still plenty of time for that to change.

With that said, considering they are going to be without their best player, in Zion Williamson, for at least a few more weeks as he continues to recover from his strained hamstring, it is likely that if the team does make the playoffs, it will be as a play-in team. So, let’s look at the dates for the play-in tournament.

According to NBA.com, the play-in tournament is set to take place from April 11th to April 14th. The Pelicans’ end-of-season standing will determine how long the tournament will take them. If they are a seventh/eighth seed and they win their first game, they won’t have to play the second game. So in that scenario, they will be the seventh seed and would be done with the tournament on April 11th or 12th.

If they lose that first game, or they finish as a ninth/tenth seed, they would need to play a second game on either April 13th or 14th. If they lose that game, they will be eliminated from playoff contention. But if they win, they will be the eighth seed in the Western Conference playoffs.

The playoffs officially start on April 15th. From there, the important dates to know are that the second round starts on May 1st/2nd, the conference finals starts on May 16th/17th, and the NBA Finals will be played from June 1st to June 18th (depending on how long the final series takes).

What date does the Pelicans’ season end? As of right now, that is still to be determined.

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