With Wednesday’s thumping of the Brooklyn Nets now behind them, the Boston Celtics are halfway through their seeding-round schedule.
Much of the league is at a similar spot — either three or four games through — so the postseason picture is coming increasingly into focus.
If the seeding round were to end Thursday, here are what the playoff matchups would look like in both conferences:
Bucks (54-14, 1 seed) vs. Magic (32-37, 8 seed)
Raptors (49-18, 2 seed) vs. Nets (32-36, 7 seed)
Celtics (45-23, 3 seed) vs. 76ers (41-27, 6 seed)
Heat (43-25, 4 seed) vs. Pacers (42-26, 5 seed)
Lakers (51-16, 1 seed) vs. Grizzlies (32-37, 8 seed)
Clippers (45-22, 2 seed) vs. Mavericks (41-29, 7 seed)
Nuggets (45-23, 3 seed) vs. Rockets (42-25, 6 seed)
Jazz (43-25, 4 seed) vs. Thunder (42-25, 5 seed)
With four seeding games remaining, the chance of the Celtics leapfrogging the Raptors is exceedingly unlikely — one more win for Toronto or one more loss for Boston locks in the Raptors ahead of the C’s. Meanwhile, the Celtics technically still could get passed by the Heat, Pacers and/or 76ers for the No. 3 seed.
Of course, a win or two more over the next four games will go a long way in securing Boston’s spot as the third seed in the East, but it’s not set in stone just yet.