Right now, we really don't know if Derrick Rose is going to play in this series or not. If he does, it's really not good news for the Nets at all
Heading into tonight's final day of the regular season, the only thing that the Nets knew about their 1st round matchup in the playoffs was that it would start at the Barclays Center, either this Saturday or Sunday, and that it would be against either the Bulls or the Hawks, depending on how those teams did in their final games. Now, after all those games have been played and the standings tabulated, the Nets will be playing the Bulls on Saturday in Brooklyn, while the Hawks are matched-up with the Pacers.
If the Nets were to luck out and draw the Hawks in the 1st round, Atlanta would have had to beat the Knicks at MSG and the Bulls lose to the Wizards in Chicago at the United Center. Neither of those things happened tonight, as the Knicks edged the Hawks 98-92 while the Bulls staved off a pesky Washington squad 95-92. Just one of those results would have been necessary to give the Bulls the #5 seed and a ticket to Brooklyn.
With their opening playoff opponent and location set (but not time yet, that will be either 5:30 pm or 8:00 pm), now Brooklyn can prepare for its 1st-ever postseason game and the Nets franchise's first since the 2006-07 season. Also, the series' 2nd game will be on Monday night. Additionally, the last two Nets teams to finish 49-33 won their opening round series with the former being the 2002-03 Eastern-Conference-winning squad. Just saying.