The race for the NBA Eastern Conference top seed intensifies tonight as the Boston Celtics (52-24) take on the Milwaukee Bucks (55-21) at 7:30 PM ET. Later, the Denver Nuggets (51-24) face the New Orleans Pelicans (38-38), with MVP Nikola Jokic’s status uncertain due to a calf injury. Both games will be televised nationally by NBA on TNT.

Celtics and Bucks Vie for Eastern Dominance

Boston and Milwaukee are locked in a fierce battle for the best win-loss record in the league, with the Celtics currently trailing by three games. The Celtics will need to finish strong, going 5-0 in their remaining games and hoping for the Bucks to falter, dropping at least two games. An alternative scenario involves the Celtics going 4-1, while the Bucks lose three of their last five games.

Last season, the Celtics swept the Brooklyn Nets and defeated the Bucks in a grueling seven-game series to win the Eastern Conference. Both teams will be eager to claim the conference and improve their chances of making it to the 2023 NBA Finals. Tonight’s game, in which the season series is tied at 1-1, could prove crucial in determining the Eastern Conference leader.

Jokic’s Availability in Question as Nuggets Face Pelicans

While the Nuggets have a relatively secure 3.5-game lead over the Memphis Grizzlies for the top seed in the Western Conference, MVP Nikola Jokic’s status remains uncertain. The superstar center is experiencing tightness in his right calf, and with Denver playing the first night of a back-to-back set, his availability is in jeopardy.

The Pelicans, currently sitting in the ninth seed, have an opportunity to capitalize on Jokic’s potential absence. A victory tonight would push them closer to securing a play-in spot, keeping the Dallas Mavericks at bay.

With the playoffs fast approaching, every game counts, and tonight’s double-header promises to be a thrilling showcase of talent and determination.

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