How All 4 Play-In Teams Matchup with Phoenix Suns in First Round Playoff

Phoenix Suns, Jae Crowder. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports
Phoenix Suns, Jae Crowder. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports /
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We knew it would be this way for some time now, but the Phoenix Suns will enter the 2022 NBA postseason this week with the entire tournament’s top seed, preserving home court advantage all the way through to the NBA Finals.

The team’s franchise-best 64-18 record, built mainly by some stout play out on the road and a record-breaking 18-game win streak, has them as well positioned as possible to chase down the Larry O’Brien—to chase down redemption.

But even though Phoenix’s playoff positioning became something set in stone almost a month in advance, the same cannot be said for their other Western Conference opponents. With the Play-In Tournament returning this year, four teams will need to scramble for the West’s final two seeds, one of which will equal a first date with the Suns.

After the Denver Nuggets beat the Memphis Grizzlies this past Thursday night, those teams became the Minnesota Timberwolves, Los Angeles Clippers, New Orleans Pelicans, and San Antonio Spurs.

Again due to Phoenix’s dazzling regular season record, none of these teams feel like serious threats to send the Suns home early this year. But with that said, you never want to be arrogant entering the craziness of an NBA postseason.

Any of these teams might end up drawing Phoenix as an initial playoff matchup, meaning that the Suns must be ready to game plan on the fly. So in breaking down all four Play-In teams, the Valley Boys will want to use this report as a plan of attack, while fans can look to it as something of a menu ahead of what should be an early playoff feast.