NBA Standings & Playoff Picture for December 18

Lebron James and Kevin Durant, Cavs and Thunder, NBA standings, schedule, playoff picture, race, division, eastern conference, western conference

Lebron James and Kevin Durant squared off Thursday night. (Getty)

It is Friday which means a full slate of NBA games with 12 games on tap tonight. The Clippers and Spurs are the highlight of the NBA schedule along with a number of other good matchups. Last night, the Cavs held on to win at home against the Thunder on a slow night in the league with only six teams playing. We take a look at the division standings as well as an early look at the playoff picture.

Here is a look at the Eastern Conference standings:


Atlantic

Kyle Lowry, Toronto Raptors, standings, playoff picture

The Raptors have a two-game lead in the Atlantic. (Getty)

1. Toronto Raptors

Record: 16-11 Current Seed in the East: 6th
The Raptors lost to the Hornets in overtime but still remain first in the Atlantic.

2. Boston Celtics

Record: 14-12 Current Seed in the East: 10th
The Celtics continue to win despite no clear cut star player. It is solid group of players that have found success playing together.

3. New York Knicks

Record: 12-14 Current Seed in the East: 11th
Don’t let the record fool you, Kristaps Porzingis has brought excitement back to Madison Square Garden.

4. Brooklyn Nets

Record: 7-18 Current Seed in the East: 14th
The Nets continue to sleep in Brooklyn. The future looks dim for the Nets.

5. Philadelphia 76ers

Record: 1-26 Current Seed in the East: 15th
It is a difficult time to be a Sixers fan and there is no end in sight.


Central

Lebron James, Cleveland Cavs,  nba standings, playoff picture

The Cavs are the leaders in the Central division. (Getty)

1. Cleveland Cavaliers

Record: 17-7 Current Seed in the East: 1st
The Cavs came up with a big win against the Thunder. They remain first in the Eastern Conference with quite a few teams on their heels.

2. Chicago Bulls

Record: 15-8 Current Seed in the East: 2nd
The Bulls are in a race with the Cavs not just for the division but for the top seed in the Eastern Conference.

3. Indiana Pacers

Record: 15-9 Current Seed in the East: 3rd
After a down year, the Pacers are right in the thick of things at the top of the Eastern Conference.

4. Detroit Pistons

Record: 15-12 Current Seed in the East: 8th
The Pistons have had a much better season than many expected. Stan Van Gundy has efforted a quick turnaround in Detroit.

5. Milwaukee Bucks

Record: 10-17 Current Seed in the East: 13th

After coming off a great season, the Bucks have failed to live up to expectations so far this season. The win against the Warriors will hopefully continue to jump start the Bucks’ resurgence.


Southeast

Dwayne Wade, Miami Heat, NBA standings, playoff picture

The Miami Heat are the leaders of the Southeast. (Getty)

1. Miami Heat

Record: 15-9 Current Seed in the East: 4th
Dwayne Wade and company are chasing their former teammate in Cleveland for the Eastern Conference crown. They are within striking distance.

2. Charlotte Hornets

Record: 15-10 Current Seed in the East: 5th
The Hornets came up with an overtime victory against a good Raptors team. It was a nice bounce back game after their blowout loss to the Magic.

3. Orlando Magic

Record: 14-11 Current Seed in the East: 7th
After years of being labeled a “talented young team” the talent is finally leading to wins in Orlando. Scott Skiles is proving that the issue for the Magic may have been poor coaching.

4. Atlanta Hawks

Record: 15-12 Current Seed in the East: 9th
While they are not off to the kind of start they experienced last season, the Hawks are still a playoff caliber team.

5. Washington Wizards

Record: 10-14 Current Seed in the East: 12th
The Wizards have been one of the most disappointing teams this season after being one of the better teams in the East last season.


Eastern Conference Playoff Picture

Cleveland Cavaliers, standings, eastern conference, playoff race, records

The Cavs have a narrow lead at the top of the Eastern Conference. (Getty)

The difference between the first and the tenth seed in the Eastern Conference is 3.5 games. It is a very close race early on with a number of teams bunched together from three to ten. The Cavaliers find themselves at the top of the Eastern standings but only lead the Bulls by one game.

Here is a look at the Eastern Conference playoff standings:

1. Cleveland Cavaliers (17-7)

2. Chicago Bulls (15-8)

3. Indiana Pacers (15-9)

4. Miami Heat (15-9)

5. Charlotte Hornets (15-10)

6. Toronto Raptors (16-11)

7. Orlando Magic (14-11)

8. Detroit Pistons (15-12)


Click the next page button to see the Western Conference standings and the current playoff seeding.

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