Wild West: Five teams contend for last 3 spots
DALLAS -- The Dallas Mavericks have nine games left in the regular season. The next one is Tuesday at home against the Sacramento Kings.
"Huge game for us," guard Jason Terry said. "There’s no bigger game for us this season."
Entering Monday's games, five teams -- Houston, Dallas, Denver, Phoenix and Utah -- are separated by 2 1/2 games and in contention for the final three playoffs spots in the Western Conference. The Mavs hold the tiebreaker against all of them, but they'll still have to take care of their own business with six of nine games on the road during this final kick.
There are multiple times during the final 18 days of the regular season when the five contenders play one another. The standings are bound to change from game to game and final seeding might come down to April 26, the final night of this 66-game regular season.
Here's a look at the remaining schedules for the five teams:
103.3 FM ESPN PODCASTS
Play Podcast ESPN NBA analyst Jalen Rose joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett to talk about the NBA playoffs.
Play Podcast Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle gives his take on the contrasting styles of the Pacers and Knicks, Carmelo Anthony, Bulls-Heat, Tom Thibodeau, the state of the West and more.
Play Podcast Chuck Cooperstein joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett to talk about who he would rather have if forced to choose between Dwight Howard and Chris Paul.
Play Podcast Tim MacMahon joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett to discuss the possibility of Chris Paul joining the Mavericks and break down what kind of pitch Mark Cuban would have to make to the NBA's best point guard.
Play Podcast ESPN.com senior NBA writer Marc Stein joins Fitzsimmons & Durrett to touch on the storylines in the NBA playoffs and offer a Mavs perspective.
Play Podcast Rick Carlisle joins Chuck Cooperstein and Tim MacMahon to discuss the Mavericks' disappointing season and what needs to happen for them to get back to the playoffs.
Play Podcast Donnie Nelson joins Chuck Cooperstein and Tim MacMahon to discuss the Mavericks' season and the importance of this summer.
Play Podcast Rick Carlisle joins Galloway & Company to discuss the Mavericks playing after being eliminated from playoff contention, whom he wants to keep for next season and much more.