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HomeNBADespite strong Wagner brothers: Magic give away playoff matchball

Despite strong Wagner brothers: Magic give away playoff matchball

The Orlando Magic with the Wagner brothers must win on the final matchday of the regular NBA season to be sure of reaching the playoffs directly. The situation in the East and West is coming to a head

The Orlando Magic with the German world champion brothers Franz and Moritz Wagner have to tremble for direct play-off qualification in the NBA. They lost their penultimate game of the season at the Philadelphia 76ers on Friday (local time) by 113:125 (61:68).

Orlando is in fifth place ahead of the final game day on Sunday, tied with the Indiana Pacers and Sixers. All three teams play at home to close out the season, with the Magic having the toughest opponent in the Milwaukee Bucks, who are second in the East. The eighth-placed Miami Heat could also benefit from a Magic defeat and move past them.

Moritz Wagner hits all his shots

Only the top six teams in each conference qualify directly for the playoffs, with four others playing for two spots in the play-in tournament. “It’s just one win, then everything is good. We have to focus on the last game and win,” said Franz Wagner, who was able to play again in Philadelphia after a two-game break and was his team’s best scorer with 24 points.

Brother Moritz put in a strong performance, hitting all of his shots and scoring 17 points. For Philadelphia, which won its seventh game in a row, the league’s top scorer Joel Embiid excelled with 32 points, 13 rebounds and seven assists.

Clippers benefit from Mavs defeat

The New York Knicks won 111-107 against the Brooklyn Nets without Isaiah Hartenstein, who was also missing Dennis Schröder. If the Bucks lose in Orlando, the Knicks could still move into second place in the East.

In the Western Conference, three teams are tied at the top ahead of the final matchday, with the Los Angeles Clippers led by Daniel Theis (14 points, seven rebounds) in fourth place despite a narrow 109:110 defeat against the Utah Jazz.

The Clippers benefited from a surprising, clear 89:107 defeat by the Dallas Mavericks with Maxi Kleber (six points, three rebounds) against the Detroit Pistons. The New Orleans Pelicans and Phoenix Suns will battle it out on Sunday for the last direct playoff spot in the West.

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