How Can Both LeBron James-Led Lakers and Stephen Curry-Led Warriors Reach the Playoffs?

Published 05/18/2021, 7:02 AM EDT
Jan 18, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry (30) defends Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) during the second quarter at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports | Courtesy: Reuters


The Los Angeles Lakers will have to face the Golden State Warriors in the play-in game this week. The LeBron James – Stephen Curry rivalry will be renewed in the playoffs once again, but this time in the Western Conference. Both teams will look to book their place in the playoffs after the first game. But that won’t be possible, as only one team can win the play-in game. But both teams can reach the playoffs.

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LeBron James and Stephen Curry – who goes to the playoffs?

For the Los Angeles Lakers and the Golden State Warriors, they have the advantage of being the seventh and the eighth seed, respectively. The winner from their game, be it LeBron James and the Lakers or Stephen Curry and the Warriors, will book their place as the seventh seed against the Phoenix Suns. Whereas, the loser will get another chance, facing the winner of the nine vs ten seed game between the San Antonio Spurs and the Memphis Grizzlies.

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May 15, 2021; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Los Angeles Lakers center Andre Drummond (2), forward LeBron James (23) and forward Anthony Davis (3) all talk during a timeout in the fourth quarter against the Indiana Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports
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The Lakers would love to get the seventh seed and take on the Phoenix Suns. Despite them being the seventh seed, many analysts feel that the Lakers would be the favorites against the Phoenix Suns. With LeBron James and Anthony Davis at full health, the Lakers will feel confident about their chances against the Suns in a seven-game series. Plus, with the return of Dennis Schroder to the team, the Lakers will have almost their entire team at full fitness.

Warriors and Lakers will be confident about the playoffs

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The Warriors can upset the Lakers and take up the seventh seed if Steph Curry gets hot on the night. Curry has played some excellent basketball in recent weeks. He has single-handedly carried the Warriors this year, winning the NBA scoring title this season with about 31 points per game, a career high. Regardless of which seed they get, the Western Conference should be worried about Stephen Curry and the Warriors.

May 16, 2021; San Francisco, California, USA; Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry (30) celebrates with forward Draymond Green (23) against the Memphis Grizzlies during the fourth quarter at Chase Center. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports | Courtesy: Reuters
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For the Lakers or the Warriors, they will not be concerned if they lose the game on Wednesday. While they would love to have the seventh seed, they will be confident about their chances against the Grizzlies or the Spurs. However, whichever of the two teams is able to secure the eighth seed has the tough challenge of facing the Utah Jazz, who are the best team in the NBA. But which one of the two teams will make it to the playoffs? We will have to wait and see.

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Aaditya Krishnamurthy

1313 articles

Aaditya Krishnamurthy is an NBA & NFL journalist for EssentiallySports, before which he worked at BusinessWorld magazine. He has been a fan of Basketball for over 10 years now, since Shaquille O’Neal was a Phoenix Suns player. During his time at Symbiosis School for Liberal Arts, he started a sports magazine for the college called the Overtime Tribune and hosted the Overtime Tribune Podcast until he graduated.

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