The NBA playoff push is in full swing during the last few weeks of the regular season, and Monday night's 10-game slate provided us with several crucial games. The Chicago Bulls continued their slide out of the Eastern Conference playoff picture, losing 102-100 to the Atlanta Hawks (who clinched a playoff spot with the win), while the Dallas Mavericks moved into a tie for the eighth and final playoff spot in the West with a 97-88 win over the Denver Nuggets.
Elsewhere, Russell Westbrook recorded his 16th triple-double of the season (26 points, 11 rebounds, 12 assists) while leading the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 119-100 victory over the Toronto Raptors, their eighth-straight win overall.
There are six more games on the slate today, so let's preview tonight's contests from across the Association.
What's On Tap:
Chicago Bulls (36-37) @ Indiana Pacers (39-34) - 7:00 p.m. ET
Indiana has won three games in a row at home and are a half-game ahead of the Pistons in the No. 7 seed in the East, while Chicago has lost four games in a row and are two and a half games out of the playoffs.
Oklahoma City Thunder (52-22) @ Detroit Pistons (39-35) - 7:30 p.m. ET
OKC is trying to win their ninth game in a row, but the stakes are a bit higher for Detroit. The Pistons are two and a half games ahead of the Wizards for the No. 8 spot in the East, but are a half game behind the Pacers for the No. 7 seed.
Houston Rockets (36-38) @ Cleveland Cavaliers (52-21) - 8:00 p.m. ET, TNT
Houston needs a win to avoid falling to ninth in the West, while the Cavs are inching closer to wrapping up the top seed in the East.
Washington Wizards (36-37) @ Golden State Warriors (66-7) - 10:30 p.m. ET, TNT
Washington is desperately trying to pick up a key win to help their playoff push, having won six of their last eight games, while Golden State is looking to inch closer to breaking the 1995-96 Bulls' mark for best record in NBA history.
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