Playoff Seeding Hangs in the Balance

By Ivan Carter
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, April 2, 2008

With eight games remaining in the regular season, Wizards fans will want to follow the game results of the Toronto Raptors and the Philadelphia 76ers.

Entering last night's games, the fifth-place Wizards (38-36) were in a tie with the Raptors but held a tiebreaker because they won the season series, 3-1.

Entering their game at New Jersey last night, the 76ers trailed both teams by one game. The Raptors appear to have the most favorable schedule of the three teams. They face a challenge tonight at eighth-place Atlanta, but have only one game remaining against a team with a winning record (at Detroit on April 13).

Philadelphia will play Atlanta in a back-to-back on Friday and Saturday, hosts Detroit next Wednesday, visits Washington to play the Wizards on April 12 and hosts Cleveland on the 14th.

Starting with tonight's game against Milwaukee, the Wizards play three straight teams with losing records but the competition will stiffen next week with games against Boston, Detroit and Philadelphia, and Washington closes the regular season at Orlando on April 16.

Last season, the Wizards didn't learn their playoff fate until the final night of the regular season and things appear to be headed in that direction again.

"It's not something we really talk about because we have a veteran team," guard Roger Mason Jr. said. "But I think everyone's aware that now is not the time to start losing games. We know that now is the time to start picking it up these last few games of the year."

UP NEXT: Wednesday vs. Bucks 7 p.m. Comcast SportsNet, WTEM-980

Friday vs. Heat 8 p.m. Comcast SportsNet, WTEM-980

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