The Miami Heat have one game remaining and they will need some help to reach the postseason.
Miami has to beat the Washington Wizards on Wednesday, but they also need either the Chicago Bulls or Indiana Pacers to lose. In a week full of playoff scenarios, the formula has now become simple. There are no other paths to the playoffs remaining for Miami.
At 40-41, Miami has a chance to make history regardless of the playoff situation. If the Heat win on Wednesday, they will become the first team in NBA history to reach the .500 mark after being 11-30. The cherry on top for Miami would be a playoff appearance as well.
The Bulls will host the Brooklyn Nets in a favorable match-up on paper. Brooklyn has the worst record in the NBA, but it could enjoy the spoiler role. If the Bulls beat the Nets, they would clinch a playoff spot. A loss could end the Bulls' season on a down note and send them to the golf course. Dwyane Wade has plenty of experience in big games and could play a big role in this contest.
The Pacers will host the Atlanta Hawks at the same time. Atlanta has already clinched a playoff spot, but the team's seeding could remain in question. With positioning possibly up for grabs, the Hawks may have incentive to try and win the game. Indiana would clinch a playoff spot with a win, but could be eliminated with a loss. The Hawks will being playing in the second game of a back-to-back, which could result in some rested players.
Washington sits in fourth place in the conference and has no chance of slipping to fifth. The Wizards can still decide who reaches the postseason, so there is some importance on their side of the court. A win by Washington eliminates the Heat and automatically places the Bulls and Pacers into the playoffs.
Miami, Chicago and Indiana will all play at the same time on Wednesday, which should mean some active scoreboard watching around the league. The games will begin at 8:00 p.m.