HomeSportsKnicks playoff seeding scenarios after gaining home field advantage in first round

Knicks playoff seeding scenarios after gaining home field advantage in first round

With their win on Friday night, the Knicks clinched home-court advantage in the first round of the 2023-24 playoffs.

Everything else is still up in the air.

Here’s a look at the scenarios for the Knicks – and their potential opponents – heading into the *final day of the regular season.


The Knicks (49-32) could finish as the No. 2 seed if they beat the Bulls on Sunday and Milwaukee (49-32) loses to Orlando.


The Knicks can finish third if they beat the Bulls and Milwaukee of Orlando on Sunday. The Bucks own the head-to-head tiebreaker against New York.

The Knicks could also finish third if they lose on Sunday; they own the head-to-head tiebreaker against Cleveland (48-33).


The Knicks would finish fourth if they lose to Chicago on Sunday, Cleveland wins the finals and Milwaukee loses. This puts New York in a tie with Milwaukee and Cleveland. In this scenario, Cleveland wins the tiebreaker because it would finish the season as Central Division champions. Milwaukee would finish ahead of New York as it won the season series against the Knicks.

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The Knicks own the head-to-head tiebreaker against Cleveland, but that tiebreaker wouldn’t apply in this three-way tie scenario. The first tiebreaker is the division winner. Cleveland would win the Central Division over Milwaukee due to a better record against division opponents.

April 12, 2024;  New York, New York, USA;  New York Knicks guard Jalen Brunson (11) reacts after a three-point basket during the second half against the Brooklyn Nets at Madison Square Garden.


The bottom of the play-off standings is also very much up in the air.

Indiana (46-35), Orlando (46-35) and Philadelphia (46-35) are currently tied. If they all finished the season with the same record, Orlando would win the tiebreaker (division winner). The Pacers would then finish ahead of Philadelphia due to their head-to-head record.

For head-to-head tiebreakers: The Sixers own the season tiebreaker against Orlando. The Magic own the tiebreaker over Indiana.

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The Sixers have a few routes to the No. 6 seed. If they win, they’ll need the Pacers or the Magic to lose to finish sixth. If the Sixers and Pacers win on Sunday and the Magic lose, Philadelphia will also finish sixth in the conference. If the Sixers and Magic win on Sunday and the Pacers lose, the Sixers will finish fifth.

The Sixers could also finish sixth if they lose, the Magic lose and the Pacers win. This would leave Indiana in fifth place; the Sixers would finish sixth because they own the tiebreaker over Orlando.

What about the heat? The Knicks would need to finish second in the East to set up a possible first-round series against Miami.

Miami can finish seventh if they win on Sunday, the Sixers and Pacers also win and the Magic lose.

But a loss in Orlando would keep the Knicks in third place.

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The Heat will finish in eighth place – with a chance to play the Knicks – if they lose to Toronto on Sunday. They also finish in eighth place if they beat Toronto and Philadelphia, and win Orlando and Indiana on Sunday. They also finish in eighth place if they beat Toronto and Philadelphia, and win Orlando and Indiana on Sunday.

Miami would face New York in the first round if it won the Play-In Tournament match 7–8.

Here are the games to watch on Sunday: Knicks vs. Bulls, Magic vs. Bucks, Pacers vs. Hawks, Hornets vs. Cavs, Heat vs. Raptors. All Eastern Conference games tip off at 1:00 PM EST. There are no matches on Saturday.

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