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Dallas Mavericks: What is NBA Play-in and how does it work?

Dallas Mavericks Luka Doncic Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
Dallas Mavericks Luka Doncic Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
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Dallas Mavericks
Dallas Mavericks Luka Doncic Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Mavericks have won four consecutive and ten of their last 12 games. Luka Doncic and his team are heating up as the regular season comes to a close. The Mavs have four games in the final week to finish the campaign. They have already won the Southwest Division, but there is still plenty on the line.

On the morning of May 11, Dallas is fifth in the Western Conference, but just a half a game ahead of the Portland Trail Blazers. Damian Lillard and company hold the tiebreaker but have three difficult games remaining on their schedule. The Mavs face one team over .500 in their last four. The race against Portland is not the one fans are watching closest, though.

Dallas is just two games ahead of the Los Angeles Lakers with four left for both teams. Falling to seventh does not guarantee the Mavericks a playoff position because of the expanded play-in tournament in 2021. Let us take a closer look at what it is, how it works, and why the Mavs are not fans.

More. Why no team wants to face the Mavs in the playoffs

What is the NBA play-in tournament: Will it impact the Dallas Mavericks?

The play-in tournament was implemented by the league to get some drama and intrigue at the start of the postseason. That drives ratings and has added intrigue to the home stretch of the regular season. There was a play-in during the Walt Disney World restart. The Blazers defeated the Memphis Grizzlies to grab the final playoff spot inside the bubble.

The play-in tournament is what will decide the final two playoff positions in each conference in 2021. The top six seeds automatic advance with the next four in both leagues battling it out for the seventh and eighth seeds.

The play-in tournament will impact the Dallas Mavericks because it will determine who makes the playoffs. The Mavs are guaranteed at least two postseason games. Here is a closer look at how it all works.

Next: How does it work?

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