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Pels in four-way tie for Play-In Tournament spot

With just 16 games left in the regular season, they are 33-35.

NEW ORLEANS — The New Orleans Pelicans are currently on the outside looking in at the Play-In Tournament in a crowded Western Conference.

With just 16 games left in the regular season, they are 33-35 and in a four-way tie for 10th place with the Utah Jazz, Oklahoma City Thunder, and the Los Angeles Lakers.

In tiebreaker scenarios that include more than two teams, the nod, in order, goes to the team with the best win percentage in all head-to-head matchups among the teams involved, according to CBS Sports.

Even though the Pelicans are out of the Play-In tourney at this moment, CBS Sports projects that they will finish as the 10th seed.

On Tuesday, the Pels will host the Lakers in a pivotal game. The Lakers lead the season series 2-1 and would clinch the tiebreaker between the two with a win. 

Brandon Ingram could miss a third straight game with an ankle sprain. Zion Williamson (hamstring) and guard Jose Alvarado (right tibia) also remain out. 

The Pelicans are 9-11 in games without both Williamson and Ingram.

Over the weekend, The Athletic's Sam Amick reported that Zion Williamson is expected back by playoff time. Williamson has not played since a hamstring injury he suffered on January 2. He will be re-evaluated two weeks from last Wednesday. 

Since Williamson has been out, the Pels are 10-21.

After the Lakers game, the Pels start the easiest stretch of their remaining schedule with four games against teams with the worst records in the NBA. The first two games are in Houston against the Rockets, and then they will return to New Orleans for a two-game homestand against the San Antonio Spurs and Charlotte Hornets.

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