After an eventful 82-game season, the NBA postseason is here once again. In 2023, there is plenty of potential for some instant classics.

For the third straight year, the postseason will begin with this iteration of the NBA’s Play-In Tournament, which will decide the seventh and eighth seeds in each conference. One day after the tournament concludes, the NBA Playoffs begin as 16 teams will vie for the Larry O’Brien Trophy.

Beginning with the Play-In Tournament, the postseason is sure to provide plenty of entertainment. In each conference, there are a number of must-see matchups, beginning with a few heavyweight battles in the opening round.

The Sporting News has you covered with everything you need to know in order to tune into the 2023 NBA Playoffs.

SERIES PREVIEWS: 76ers vs. Nets | Cavaliers vs. Knicks

How to watch the NBA Playoffs

  • Stream: Sling TV

Games in the 2023 NBA Playoffs will air on ABC, ESPN, TNT and NBA TV. During the first round and conference semifinals, select games will air on each of the aforementioned networks.

The 2023 Eastern Conference Finals will air exclusively on TNT while this year’s Western Conference Finals will air on ESPN. Each game of the 2023 NBA Finals will air exclusively on ABC.

Fans in the U.S. can watch postseason games from the NBA Play-In Tournament through the NBA Finals on Sling TV, which is now offering HALF OFF your first month! Stream Sling Orange for $20 in your first month to catch all the games on TNT, ESPN & ABC. For games on NBA TV, subscribe to Sling Orange & Sports Extra for $27.50 in your first month. Local regional blackout restrictions apply.

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How the NBA Play-In Tournament works

The top six teams in each conference at the end of the regular season earn a guaranteed spot in the NBA Playoffs. The teams that finish Nos. 7 through No. 10 will enter the Play-In Tournament to determine the Nos. 7 and 8 seeds.

Each conference’s Nos. 7 and 8 teams will face off in the first round of the Play-In Tournament. The winner will earn the No. 7 seed while the loser will have one more opportunity to make the playoffs.

Each conference’s Nos. 9 and 10 teams will then play against each other, with the winner advancing to play the loser of the No. 7-vs.-No. 8 game. The loser will be eliminated from playoff contention.

The loser of the No. 7-vs.-No. 8 game and the winner of the No. 9-vs.-No. 10 will meet. The winner will earn the No. 8 seed. The loser will be eliminated.

MORE: Heat vs. Hawks Play-In Tournament preview

When does the NBA Play-In Tournament start?

  • Play-In Tournament: April 11-14
  • NBA Playoffs: April 15

After the 2022-23 NBA regular season ended on April 9, the 2023 NBA Play-In Tournament begins on Tuesday, April 11. The first round of the 2023 NBA Playoffs will begin four days later on Saturday, April 15.

NBA Play-In Tournament matchups 2023

Eastern Conference

(7) Heat vs. (8) Hawks

(9) Raptors vs. (10) Bulls

Western Conference

(7) Lakers vs. (8) Timberwolves

(9) Pelicans vs. (10) Thunder

NBA Play-In Tournament schedule

Tuesday, April 11

 MatchupTime (ET)TV channel (US)TV channel (CA)
Game 1Hawks vs. Heat7:30 p.m.TNTTSN
Game 2Timberwolves vs. Lakers10 p.m.TNTSN 360

Wednesday, April 12

 MatchupTime (ET)TV channel (US)TV channel (CA)
Game 3Bulls vs. Raptors7 p.m.ESPNTBD
Game 4Thunder vs Pelicans9:30 p.m.ESPNTBD

Friday, April 14

 MatchupTime (ET)TV channel (US)TV channel (CA)
Game 5Winner of Game 3 vs. Loser of Game 17/7:30 p.m.TNTTSN
Game 6Winner of Game 4 vs. Loser of Game 29:30/10 p.m.ESPNTSN

NBA Playoff matchups 2023

Eastern Conference

(1) Bucks vs. (8) Play-In winner

(2) Celtics vs. (7) Play-In winner

(3) 76ers vs. (6) Nets

(4) Cavaliers vs. (5) Knicks

Western Conference

(1) Nuggets vs. (8) Play-In winner

(2) Grizzlies vs. (7) Play-In winner

(3) Kings vs. (6) Warriors

(4) Suns vs. (5) Clippers

NBA Playoff schedule 2023: First round

The NBA has released the partial schedule for the first weekend of the 2023 NBA Playoffs. The schedule for Saturday, April 15 is set while the schedule for Sunday, April 16 has yet to be determined.

Check back for updates on the full weekend schedule as well as the schedule for the entirety of the first round of the NBA Playoffs.

(All times Eastern)

Saturday, April 15

GameTimeNational TV (US)National TV (CA)
Nets vs. 76ers (Game 1)1 p.m.ESPNTSN 1/5
No. 7 seed vs. Celtics (Game 1)3:30 p.m.ESPNTSN 1/5
Knicks vs. Cavaliers (Game 1)6 p.m.ESPNTBD
Warriors vs. Kings (Game 1)8:30 p.m.ABCTBD

Sunday, April 16

GameTimeNational TV (US)National TV (CA)
No. 8 seed vs. Bucks (Game 1)TBDTBDTSN 5
No. 8 seed vs. Nuggets (Game 1)TBDTBDTSN 5
No. 7 seed vs. Grizzlies (Game 1)TBDTBDTSN 5
Clippers vs. Suns (Game 1)TBDTBDTSN 5

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