It was a packed slate on Friday (ET) and 11 of the Western Conference's 15 teams were taking the floor.
That meant, irrespective of who wins, there was going to be a ton of impact on the logjam in the Conference standings.
Here's a quick look at the biggest winners and losers while looking at the upcoming schedule for the teams in question.
Play-In Tournament: Dallas & Portland clinch key tiebreakers
Despite playing on the second night of a back-to-back, Luka Doncic and the Mavericks took care of business as they hosted the Cleveland Cavaliers.
There were plenty of reasons to celebrate in the 110-90 win with Doncic passing 5,000 career points and head coach Rick Carlisle rising up the all-time winningest coaches leaderboard.
Congrats to @dallasmavs coach Rick Carlisle for moving up to 15th on the all-time coaching wins list! pic.twitter.com/bVRXTNsJ4a- NBA (@NBA) May 8, 2021
However, given their position on the standings, the biggest takeaway from the contest would be clinching the division title - their fourth in franchise history and first since 2009-10. Sealing up the division title gives Dallas the tiebreaker if they were to slip into a three-way tie with the Los Angeles Lakers and the Portland Trail Blazers.
If it isn't a three-way tie, the Mavericks do hold the tiebreaker over the Lakers. The Trail Blazers were the other big winner from Friday (ET).
Defeating a shorthanded Lakers at the Moda Center, which welcomed fans for the first time this season, Portland has clinched the tiebreaker against the Lakers. The 106-101 victory was powered by Damian Lillard's 38 points and seven assists, a performance that helped the Trail Blazers withstand Anthony Davis' 36-point night.
Dame scores 38 PTS on just 18 shot attempts! 🤯- NBA (@NBA) May 8, 2021
The @trailblazers move into sole possession of the No. 6 seed out West. #RipCity pic.twitter.com/dI9yhZtxHm
The Lakers' downward spiral continues, as they have won lost eight of their last 10.
The Trail Blazers would be planning to simply win more and hope there's no three-way tie because then they could climb to as high as the fifth seed as they also hold the tiebreaker against the Mavericks courtesy of their 2-1 head-to-head season series.
Mavericks: Cleveland, Memphis, New Orleans, Toronto, Minnesota
Trail Blazers: San Antonio, Houston, Utah, Phoenix, Denver
Lakers: Phoenix, New York, Houston, Indiana, New Orleans
Status quo for Utah, Phoenix
The Suns and Jazz, competing for the best record in the league - the top seed in the Western Conference, came into Friday's (EST) games separated by one and they stayed that way with both registering wins.
For the shorthanded Jazz, playing without their starting line-up in Donovan Mitchell and Mike Conley Jr., Bojan Bogdanovic went off. In the 127-120 win, the Croatian finished with a career-high 48 against the Denver Nuggets in a rematch of last year's thrilling seven-game first-round playoff matchup.
📹| 𝐂𝐀𝐑𝐄𝐄𝐑 𝐇𝐈𝐆𝐇, 𝐁𝐑𝐎𝐓𝐇𝐀!- utahjazz (@utahjazz) May 8, 2021
48 points, 8 threes, 8 rebounds, 8/8 ft, 2 assists, 2 steals | #TakeNote pic.twitter.com/82bCKckGke
The loss puts Denver one game behind the LA Clippers for the third seed with each team having five to go. All the Nuggets need to do is finish with the same number of wins because they hold the tiebreaker against the Clippers.
Meanwhile in Phoenix, it was a tight contest but the Suns ran away with it late. Over a 10-minute stretch in the second half, they seized control with a dominating 40-16 run to eventually win 128-105.
💪 @DeandreAyton tallies 26 PTS, 15 REB, leading the @Suns to victory vs. NYK! #WeAreTheValley pic.twitter.com/elGPxeiiae- NBA (@NBA) May 8, 2021
Suns: Lakers, Golden State, Portland, San Antonio, San Antonio
Jazz: Houston, Golden State, Portland, Oklahoma City, Sacramento
San Antonio create separation
They were playing some tough opponents but their free-fall came at the wrong time. However, Friday helped the Spurs get back on track and ensure there is some distance to the New Orleans Pelicans for the 10th and final Play-In seed.
With seven players scoring in double figures, led by Dejounte Murray's 22 points and seven assists, San Antonio defeat the Sacramento Kings 113-104 and snapped their five-game skid.
With the Pelicans, who were set to be without Zion Williamson for the remainder of the season, losing earlier in the day in Philadelphia, the Spurs hold a two-game lead for the 10th spot with six games to play while New Orleans got five more in the schedule.
Spurs: Portland, Milwaukee, Brooklyn, New York, Phoenix, Phoenix
Pelicans: Charlotte, Memphis, Dallas, Golden State, Los Angeles
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