Eastern Notes: Knicks, Play-In Tournament, Irving

The Knicks would technically make the 2020 postseason under a proposed play-in tournament, as I detailed for Heavy.com. The tournament, which is just one of the options being discussed for the NBA’s return, would have the 8-12 seeds in each conference battle for the right to play the No. 1 seed in a series.

New York sits 12th in the Eastern Conference and would take on the Wizards, who hold the ninth spot. The Hornets (10th) would take on the Bulls (11th) and the winner of this bracket would face the Magic to decide which team gets a typical first-round playoff series against the Bucks.

Again, the scenario is just one of many being floated and is nowhere near concrete, though seeing the Knicks in the postseason would nonetheless be an unexpected sight.

Here’s more from the Eastern Conference:

  • Bradley Beal would arguably be the best player on the Eastern Conference side of the bracket, as I explained in the same piece. I’d speculate that Washington—a team that overachieved this season—would be favored in the first-round matchup against New York.
  • Roughly 11 weeks after undergoing shoulder surgery, Nets guard Kyrie Irving published an Instagram story today suggesting he has returned to the gym, as Anthony Puccio of Nets Daily relays (Twitter link). Irving is in year one of a four-year deal with Brooklyn — it’s not clear if he’d have an opportunity to return if the NBA season resumes this summer.
  • Thunder coach Billy Donovan had a major impact on Jaylen Brown‘s game, as the Celtics forward explains (h/t Mark Murphy of the Boston Herald). Donovan coached Brown on Team USA’s Under-18 team a few years back. “He told me he wasn’t playing me because he said I didn’t play hard,” Brown said. “… He told me you’re only going to be in the league for three years because you don’t play hard…I was so mad I was crying. But I think Billy Donovan had a big impact on my drive for sure. I’m in the NBA now, and hopefully I have a couple more years now to go, so we’ll see.” 
newest oldest

15 thoughts on “Eastern Notes: Knicks, Play-In Tournament, Irving

  1. chiefivey

    play in tourny would be more interesting than having teams just pick up where they left off for sure

  2. mlbnyyfan

    Stop delaying the obvious no matter what happens Knicks won’t make the playoffs. Can you start this off-season already.

  3. HubcapDiamondStarHalo

    Probably a matter of semantics, but if you’re playing in a tourney to see who gets the number eight seed, are you actually in the postseason?

    • hiflew

      I don’t consider the first four games of the NCAA tournament a part of the tourney. They are not part of most tourney pools.

      I don’t consider a baseball team that loses the single Wild Card game having been a postseason team. Officially they are in the postseason, but it doesn’t feel like it to me.

      I wouldn’t consider anything like this as a postseason either.

  4. 9 playing 12, 10 playing 11, then the two winners playing, then that winner playing the 8 seed, then *that* winner playing the #1 seed seems needlessly complicated.

    Cut out the 12 seed and just go 8 vs. 11, 9 vs. 10, then the winners play and then *that* winner goes on to play the #1 seed. No reason to add a layer to include the 12th best team in the east, the Knicks, who went 21-45 and the west, the Spurs, who went 27-36. Both teams were awful and don’t deserve it.

    In fact, you should just scrap this idea entirely as the 9th seed in the east (Washington) went 24-40 and the 9th seed in the west (Portland) went 29-37. None of these teams deserve any kind of postseason, even if they’re play-in games.

    If the season resumes, time is going to be limited and there’s no reason to waste a few days or a week letting garbage teams vie for the right to get swept in the first round.

  5. hiflew

    If you are going to do this,just make it 8 v 11 and 9 v 10 with the winners facing off to play #1. The only reason they are including a 5th team is so the Knicks can be involved and they can get those high NY ratings.

    Of course I agree that they should just let the 8 seed play because the 8 seed was better for 59 games as opposed to one game or three or whatever. They already earned the right to get a chance at the #1 seed.

  6. x%sure

    How dumb, a 24-team postseason in a 30-team league, with no homecourt advantage. Someone save us.

  7. A play in tournament is definitely and interesting idea. Because right now, all the other games are irrelevant in the eyes of the fan, but if you put some meaning in the eyes of the fan, it becomes a lot more interesting and teams would make up more revenue than they would if they just went straight into the playoffs, plus a lot of these teams in the west were primed to make a run for the 8th spot before the season was suspended. Yeah the east will be weak, but I’d love to see a Cinderella team kick some ass in a professional post season, just like the nationals did this year in the MLB to beat the Houston Asterisks

  8. realistnotsucker

    The Knicks are the only team that doesn’t even know how to lose right

  9. mlbnyyfan

    I don’t think the Nationals were a Cinderella team with that Rotation. I am however thrilled they beat the Houston Asterisks

  10. KnickerbockerAl

    Just start the playoffs. Probably need a couple wks. To get in gm shape. Let’s move on. Hope for the best

Leave a Reply