LeBron James wants a play-in tournament for final NBA Playoff berths

Dylan Mickanen
NBC Sports Northwest

If the NBA jumps right into the postseason when it returns from suspension, then the Portland Trail Blazers will likely be on the outside looking in.

When the season got suspended following Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert testing positive for COVID-19, the Blazers were 3.5 games out of the eighth seed and final playoff berth in the Western Conference occupied by the Memphis Grizzlies.

However, if Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James gets his way, then maybe the Blazers' season isn't over.

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In a recent appearance on the Road Trippin' Podcast with Allie Clifton, Talkin' Blazers host Channing Frye, and Richard Jefferson, LeBron talked about how he does not want to go straight into the postseason when the league returns.

One thing you can't just do is go straight to the playoffs, because it discredits the 60-plus games that guys had fighting for that position. - LeBron James

When discussing how to determine the final playoff berths, LeBron broke down the eighth seed in the West, and his eventual first-round opponent.

You got Portland. You got Memphis...New Orleans and Sacramento tinkering around there...so if there's five or ten games left...why not those guys battle it out? Make them play each other all five games? 

After Clifton asked if a three-game play-in series would work, the crew came together with a plan that Memphis and Sacramento have a three-game series along with Portland and New Orleans. Then, the winners play in another series to determine who plays the Lakers in the first round of the NBA Playoffs.

LeBron later said that Portland would be a tough team to play in the first round. 

Channing Frye had brought up the idea of a play-in tournament earlier this year on Talkin' Blazers about a play-in tournament for the eighth seed. 

Because we're in unprecedented territory, the NBA has an opportunity to say 'Hey, let's try an in-game tournament,' right? We have five teams that are within four games of each other that want to make one spot... So we make a little tournament and we see how that goes...if it does work then you implement it in for next year...

If the Road Trippin' crew gets their way, then maybe the Blazers can play their way into the postseason and prove the King correct. 

LeBron James wants a play-in tournament for final NBA Playoff berths originally appeared on NBC Sports Northwest

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