2024 NBA Play-In preview, odds for Heat vs. 76ers, Hawks vs. Bulls

Note: if you purchase something through one of our affiliate links, Schneps Media may earn a commission.
NBA Play-IN Jimmy Butler Heat
Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler (22) looks for an opening as Toronto Raptors forward Kelly Olynyk (41) defends during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Sunday, April 14, 2024, in Miami. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

The postseason — not technically the playoffs, yet — got underway Tuesday with a pair of Western Conference matchups. 

The Eastern Conference takes the stage Wednesday: The Philadelphia 76ers play host to the Miami Heat in a game to decide the No. 7 seed — the winner will face the Knicks — and the Atlanta Hawks visit the Chicago Bulls with the season on the line for both those clubs.

The Lakers and Heat showed that the play-in can be a springboard to bigger and better things last year; the Lakers reached the Western Conference finals, the Heat reached the NBA Finals.

“We’re not the same group as last year,” Heat star Jimmy Butler said. “We — I — are very confident in the guys that we do have, and we know what we’re capable of. We’ll see what we got whenever the time gets here.”

Eastern Conference Matchups

NO. 8 MIAMI (46-36) AT NO. 7 PHILADELPHIA (47-35)

  • Wednesday, 7 p.m., ESPN
  • Season series: Split, 2-2
  • Play-in appearances: 2nd for Miami (2023), 1st for Philadelphia

At stake: Winner plays New York in Game 1 on Saturday; loser plays elimination game Friday.

Outlook: The teams met on Christmas in Miami (Heat won 119-113) and three times since, though it should be noted that Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid and Miami’s Jimmy Butler each played in only one of the four games between the clubs this season. … When Kyle Lowry plays, his teams are 3-0 in the series this season — 2-0 with him in a Philly uniform, 1-0 when was in a Miami uniform.


  • Spread: Philadelphia -4.5
  • Over/Under: 207.5
  • Philadelphia Moneyline: -198
  • Miami Moenyline: +164

NO. 10 ATLANTA (36-46) AT NO. 9 CHICAGO (39-43)

  • Wednesday, 9:30 p.m., ESPN
  • Season series: Chicago, 2-1
  • Play-in appearances: 3rd for Atlanta (2022, 2023); 2nd for Chicago (2023)

At stake: Winner plays elimination game Friday; loser is eliminated.

Outlook: The Hawks are bidding to be the first team to win four play-in games. They’re 3-0 in their past appearances in the tournament. … DeMar DeRozan averaged 28.3 points for Chicago in the season series. … Bogdan Bogdanovic averaged 23.3 points for Atlanta, on 46% shooting from 3-point range vs. the Bulls. … Trae Young appeared in two games in the series and the Bulls held him to 29% shooting.


  • Spread: Chicago -3
  • Over/Under: 220.5
  • Atlanta Moneyline: +124
  • Chicago Moenyline: -148

Odds courtesy of DraftKings. For more, click here.

For more on the NBA Play-In, visit AMNY.com