Tonight, the Brooklyn Nets will kick off the NBA playoffs (kind of), facing off against the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first game of the play-in tournament. The Nets are overwhelming favorites because they employ Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, while the Cavs are missing Jarrett Allen due to a fractured finger. It will not be particularly exciting, especially given that it's not a win-or-go-home game, but it does indicate the arrival of the best part of the basketball calendar.
Emmanuel Acho said the game was actually the most unfortunate and unnecessary of Durant's career. On Speak For Yourself, Acho explained that there are really no positive outcomes for Brooklyn.
Then Acho declared this was a play-out game, not a play-in game, for Brooklyn.
Watching the segment, it's unclear if Acho really understands what the play-in tournament is. The Nets are not guaranteed a playoff spot. That is why they're in the tournament in the first place. If they lose to Cleveland, they have to beat the winner of the 9-10 game between Atlanta and Charlotte to keep their playoff spot. If they somehow lose both games, they're out of the playoffs entirely.
Acho might be saying that the concept of the Nets losing even one game, much less two, in these circumstances is so laughable that it may as well not matter. Which is a fairly valid point. A team with the talent the Nets have is not meant to be in the play-in tournament.
But even with that favorable view of the segment, play-in and play-out makes ... little sense.