Who will be the Mavericks First Opponent of the Postseason?

The Dallas Mavericks currently hold the fifth spot in the NBA's Western Conference. However, it remains to be seen who they will face in the first round of the NBA playoffs.
Atlanta Hawks v Dallas Mavericks
Atlanta Hawks v Dallas Mavericks / Ron Jenkins/GettyImages

With less than a week left in the NBA regular season, the Dallas Mavericks are currently sitting pretty in the fifth spot in the Western Conference. With teams starting to solidify their playoff seed going into the postseason, the Mavs are beginning to look ahead to who they will most likely face when the playoffs start on April 20th.

Thankfully, with the Mavs as the fifth seed, they will be able to avoid the play-in tournament that teams seeded seven and under are subjected to.

Since the Mavericks look like they will avoid the play-in, they will get a few more days of rest, which will be beneficial coming off the grind of this regular season as several players are still dealing with nagging injuries.

However, the Mavericks' journey in the postseason will likely be marked by a familiar adversary - the Los Angeles Clippers, who currently hold the fourth seed in the Western Conference.

The Clippers have emerged as a formidable rival for the Mavericks in recent years, with the two teams clashing in two of the Mavericks' last three postseason appearances. However, the Mavericks have yet to triumph over them in a playoff series. 

The Clippers are having another successful season and are currently 21 games over .500 to close the season. The prospect of the Mavs facing the Clippers to start the playoffs doesn't bode too well for Dallas since they could only win one of the three games against the Clippers this season.

If the Mavs can defeat the Clippers in the postseason, it would be a big stepping stone for them and possibly bring them one step closer to winning their first championship in over a decade.

The other possible team the Mavs could face in the first round of the playoffs is the up-and-coming Oklahoma City Thunder. The Thunder are currently sitting in the third seed and are looking to secure a playoff spot for the first time since 2020.

The Thunder have quickly become one of the most well-balanced teams in the Western Conference and could give the Mavs a run for their money this postseason. So far, the Mavs are 1-2 against the Thunder and are looking to tie up the series when they face OKC next Sunday to end the regular season.

Either way, if the Mavericks face the Thunder or the Clippers, they are in for a challenging start to the playoffs.

However, if the Mavs can keep playing to the level they have been playing for the last month of the season, they stand a chance to defeat anyone they face in the NBA playoffs.

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