Even the 15 teams with playoff berths clinched had plenty at stake as zero playoff matchups were set.
There are nine teams that know Wednesday is the last day of their season.
The Toronto Raptors hold the number one seed in the Eastern Conference with a record of 59-22. There were only teams locked into specific seeds after 81 games. After studying the scenarios and such for the past few weeks, most people that cover any of the teams involved in the playoff race out West have advanced degrees in National Basketball Association playoff tiebreakers, but here's the simplest way to break down the possibilities as the Thunder head into their final regular season game against the Grizzlies...
Philadelphia would be the No. 3 seed in the East if it beats Milwaukee, and a franchise that knew nothing but losing (OK, "process" losing) in recent years will set a record for winning.
TheWizards followed up a huge win over the Celtics.by losing to a Magic team with massive incentive to lose for lottery positioning. No matter which team lands in fourth, it plays the Pacers in the first round. The Bucks will capture No. 7 seed with a loss and a Heat win and a Wizards loss or a Heat loss and a Wizards win.
While the Bucks visit the Sixers, Miami hosts Toronto and Washington visits Orlando. If they lose and the Cavs win, Philly will be fourth. The victor of that game won't necessarily finish in the 8th spot, however.
However, the loser of the clash at Moda Center is not guaranteed the fourth seed if results elsewhere fall a certain way.
If Memphis wins in Oklahoma City and San Antonio wins in New Orleans on Wednesday, the Wolves will get the No. 6 seed and face the victor of the Portland-Utah game. They could have moved up had New Orleans or Oklahoma City lost, but they did not.
Miami also owns the tiebreaker over the Wizards because they have a better "divisional winning percentage" (DWP) at.687 (11-5) compared to the Wizards'.533 DWP (8-7), which is subject to change but will not exceed the Heat's DWP.
Oklahoma City appears to have the most to gain Wednesday, as it plays Memphis while the other teams around it square off. If the Portland Trail Blazers win against the Utah Jazz they will finish with the 3rd seed, but if they lose they will finish in the 4th spot. However, if Oklahoma City can't take care of business against Memphis, it is going to be the No. 8 seed.
The biggest game on Wednesday's slate is the Denver at Minnesota contest, the first last-day-of-season game in 21 years where the victor will go to the playoffs and the loser will miss the postseason. At this point, there are only three seed possibilities for the Thunder: fourth, sixth or eighth.
Both teams enter Wednesday as Spurs fans, as the chances increase to finish sixth if San Antonio defeats New Orleans.