2023 NBA In-Season Tournament: Knicks, Nets groups, more

Josh Hart and RJ Barrett Knicks NBA In-Season tournament
(AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

The NBA has introduced its first-ever In-Season Tournament that will debut during the 2023-24 regular season from Nov. 3-Dec 9. The tournament will feature two stages: group play and the knockout round.

2023 NBA In-Season Tournament schedule

Date Event
Friday, Nov. 3 Start of Group Play
Monday, Dec. 4 Quarterfinals
Thursday, Dec. 5 Quarterfinals
Thursday, Dec. 7 Semifinals
Saturday, Dec. 9 Championship

Group play games will be held every Tuesday and Friday and will be counted toward the teams’ 2023-24 regular season record. Each of the teams will play a total of four games — two home and two away.

To formulate the six groups of five teams — three from each conference — the teams were randomly generated based on their win-loss record from the 2022-23 regular season. The 15 seeds from each conference were separated into five ranks; No. 1-No. 3, No. 4-No. 6, No. 7-No. 9, No. 10-No. 12, and No. 13-No. 15. Every group will have one team randomly chosen from each rank to formulate the groups.

Here are the results:

2023 NBA In-Season Tournament Groups

West Group A West Group B West Group C East Group A East Group B East Group C
Memphis Grizzlies Denver Nuggets Sacramento Kings Philadelphia 76ers Milwaukee Bucks Boston Celtics
Phoenix Suns LA Clippers Golden State Warriors Cleveland Cavaliers New York Knicks Brooklyn Nets
LA Lakers New Orleans Pelicans Minnesota Timberwolves Atlanta Hawks Miami Heat Toronto Raptors
Utah Jazz Dallas Mavericks Oklahoma City Thunder Indiana Pacers Washington Wizards Chicago Bulls
Portland Trail Blazers Houston Rockets San Antonio Spurs Detroit Pistons Charlotte Hornets Orlando Magic

After every team has played a total of four games, the top team in each group will receive an automatic berth to the knockout round followed by two wild cards. According to the NBA, the wild cards will be teams with the best group play record that did not win their group.

Once the eight teams are finalized, the teams will compete for the NBA Cup in single-elimination games. The knockout rounds will consist of a quarterfinal, semifinal, and championship. In addition, to the NBA Cup, there will be an MVP of the tournament award and an all-tournament team award. The quarterfinal and semifinal games will count toward each team’s regular season record, but the Championship game will not.

Single-elimination games will showcase a more intense competitive atmosphere since this is not a seven-game series like the playoffs.

Jimmy Butler is guarded by the Knicks
Miami Heat’s Jimmy Butler (22).shoots over New York Knicks’ RJ Barrett (9) and Jalen Brunson during the first half of Game 5 of an NBA basketball Eastern Conference playoffs semifinal Wednesday, May 10, 2023, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

In addition, the in-season tournament will have a cash prize for teams that make it to the quarterfinal, semifinal, and championship. In the quarterfinals, semifinals, and championship, each player on the losing team will be awarded: $50,000, $100,000, and $200,000. For the championship team, each player will get $500,000.

The New York Knicks will have to face some of the very best in their group, which could very well be the toughest in the tournament considering they’ll face off against the defending Eastern Conference champion Miami Heat — who very well could be on the cusp of acquiring Damian Lillard to team up with Jimmy Butler — and last year’s No. 1 seed in the East, the Milwaukee Bucks.

The Charlotte Hornets (No. 14 seed) and Washington Wizards (No. 12 seed) provide more winnable matchups for Tom Thibodeau’s men.

The Brooklyn Nets will have to face up against the Boston Celtics, the only team in the group that made the playoffs in the 2022-23 season, falling to the Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals.

With the Toronto Raptors, Chicago Bulls, and Orlando Magic failing to make the playoffs, we can see the Nets showcase their chemistry and skill to make a legitimate push for the knockout stage.

For more on the Knicks, Nets, and the NBA In-Season Tournament, visit AMNY.com