Bradley Beal-Jayson Tatum matchup highlights St. Louis connections to 2021 NBA playoffs

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BOSTON, MA – DECEMBER 25: Jayson Tatum #0 of the Boston Celtics and Bradley Beal #3 of the Washington Wizards talk after the game at TD Garden on December 25, 2017 in Boston, Massachusetts.(Photo by Omar Rawlings/Getty Images)

ST. LOUIS–The NBA playoffs begin Tuesday with the first ever “Play-In Tournament”, featuring the teams ranked 7-10 in each conference squaring off for the last two playoff spots.

There’s a distinct St. Louis flavor to the Play-In round, with Chaminade grads Jayson Tatum (Boston) and Bradley Beal (Washington) facing off in the 7-8 game Tuesday at 8pm CST on TNT.

Wednesday night, the Memphis Grizzlies face the San Antonio Spurs in a 9-10 matchup (6:30 CST ESPN) . Former Missouri forward Jontay Porter made his NBA debut with Memphis earlier this season and has seen limited minutes. De Smet Jesuit graduate and former head coach Blake Ahearn is a Memphis assistant.

In the 7-8 game, the Los Angeles Lakers take on the Golden State Warriors. The Lakers signed guard Ben McLemore, who attended Wellston High School before a college career at Kansas.

Other St. Louis area notables in the 2021 NBA playoffs:

Utah: Head Coach Quin Snyder (Missouri), guard Jordan Clarkson (Missouri), Player Development Coach Keyon Dooling (Missouri).

Denver: Forward Michael Porter, Jr. (Missouri), President-Governor Josh Kroenke (Missouri)

LA Clippers: Assistant Coach Larry Drew (Missouri)

Phoenix Suns: Assistant Coach Brian Randle (Illinois)

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