NBA Playoffs are around the corner. With The Brooklyn Nets ( with KD and Kyrie fulltime players) looking like a 7th or 8th seed , the top teams are jockeying for position, trying to avoid the Nets in the first round. The sweet spot seems to be to finish 3rd.
Miami looks like the number 1 seed and their reward may be the Nets. So in this last week, we look forward to seeing teams trying to lose to set up a favorable first round matchup. Not tanking in the traditional sense. Not looking for an improved lottery pick. Just a better matchup in the playoffs.
Have the top 4 seeds, in order of finish, select their first round opponent from the bottom 4 teams. The top 4 teams still get homecourt advantage. So if Miami finishes first they can choose to play the 5th,6th,7th or 8th seed in the first round. If the Celtics finish second, they can pick any of the 3 remaining lower seeds.
And so on.
So if you want to avoid the Nets, finish first and pick someone else. In the second round the 4 winners are reseeded and it is a traditional bracket tournament until the title is won.
This system works on a few levels....
- avoids intentional losing for a better matchup in first round.....
- rewards winning in regular season
- creates some animosity between a higher seed and the team they pick to play
- creates another " made for TV" event when the first round matchups are selected
For my next trick , I'm going to get the average MLB game down to an hour and a half.