How Dallas Mavericks can still make the Play-In Tournament with 3 games remaining
By Noah Weber
The Dallas Mavericks no longer control their own destiny. They traded for Kyrie Irving to try to climb the Western Conference standings, but have done the exact opposite.
They've lost seven of their last eight games and nine of 13 to fall to 11th in the Western Conference standings. They are one game behind the Oklahoma City Thunder and two games behind the Minnesota Timberwolves for the final Play-In Tournament spots.
How can the Dallas Mavericks make the Play-In Tournament with 3 games remaining
Dallas being one game back from OKC may seem manageable, but the Thunder hold the tiebreaker, so the Mavericks would have to finish one game ahead of the Thunder in order to make the Play-In.
The Timberwolves also hold the tiebreaker over the Mavericks. Although unlikely, the Timberwolves would have to lose their final three games, and Dallas would have to win their last three games to pass Minnesota.
For Dallas to pass Oklahoma City, they would have to finish at least 2-1 in their final three games, while OKC would have to lose their final three games. Dallas could also pass OKC if they finish 3-0, while OKC finishes 1-2 or worse.
Dallas finishes their season with a three-game homestand against the Kings, Bulls, and Spurs. Even if Dallas finds a way to win out, Minnesota would have to lose out, or/and the Thunder would have to go 1-2.
Both scenarios seem unlikely as the Thunder have only lost three games in a row once since 2023 started, and the Timberwolves play the tanking Spurs in their second-to-last game this season.
Stay tuned to see if the Dallas Mavericks can string together at least two wins at home and have the chance to keep their season alive. The Mavericks' next game is on April 5 against the Kings. Dallas is 1-1 against the Kings this season and a win gives them the season series over Sacramento.