One thing is certain - the Portland Trail Blazers will open the postseason on the road.
Coach Nate McMillan’s team will have to see how the final day of the regular season shakes out to see which of three cities they’ll be headed to begin the playoffs.
After clinching the sixth seed in the Western Conference with a victory in their home finale, the Trail Blazers close the regular season Wednesday night against the Golden State Warriors.
Despite having its season high-tying eight-game home winning streak snapped with a 108-87 loss to Golden State (35-46) on April 5, Portland (48-33) clinched its third consecutive playoff berth earlier that night with Houston’s loss to Sacramento.
With a 102-89 victory over Memphis on Tuesday, the Trail Blazers won for the fifth time in six games and know they’ll meet the third seed when the postseason starts.
“Whenever you can get through everything we’ve been through this year - the injuries and the guys out of the lineup - and still be the sixth seed it feels good,” LaMarcus Aldridge(notes) said after recording his fourth straight double-double with 22 points and 11 rebounds.
However, the Trail Blazers won’t know who to prepare for until Wednesday’s games are completed.
The Los Angeles Lakers, who defeated West-leading San Antonio 102-93 on Wednesday to tie Dallas for the second seed, could drop to No. 3 if they lose at Sacramento and the Mavericks defeat New Orleans.
Dallas, though, would finish third if they lose to the Hornets, the Lakers win and Oklahoma City loses to Milwaukee.
The Blazers could also face the Northwest Division champion Thunder if Oklahoma City wins and Dallas loses.
Portland has dropped five its last seven on the road, and is 18-22 away from home this season.
While the Blazers prepare for the postseason, the Warriors conclude their fourth straight season without a playoff berth.
Ellis, who leads the league in minutes per game (40.4) and is averaging 24.1 points, 5.6 assists and 3.5 rebounds, suffered a concussion in Sunday’s 104-103 loss to Sacramento. Without the sixth-year guard, Golden State closed out its road schedule Monday with a 134-111 loss to Denver.
“Well, you miss your go-to guy,” coach Keith Smart said of Ellis, who’s listed as day-to-day.
Curry, scoring a career-best 18.6 points per game with 5.8 assists, sprained his right ankle in the fourth quarter and is questionable.
If the team’s top two scorers are out, Dorell Wright(notes) could have even more chances to impress in the final game of his breakout season. The seventh-year swingman, acquired from Miami last summer, needs 10 points Wednesday to finish with more this season than in his first six combined (1,333).
Wright is averaging 10.7 points and 6.3 rebounds in three games against Portland this season. He scored five of his 16 in the fourth quarter and grabbed eight boards in the teams’ only meeting in Oakland this season - a 109-102 Warriors victory on Christmas Day.
Golden State is trying to win the season series from Portland for the fourth time in six years.