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Rachel Von | The Journal Gazette
Mad Ants rookie Trey McKinney-Jones and the rest of the team will find out today who they’ll play first in the NBA D-League playoffs.

Mad Ants weigh playoff-foe options

– The Mad Ants will get to select their opponent from the fourth to eighth seeds for the opening round of the D-League playoffs, thanks to securing the top seed.

The Central Division champion, which won’t be among the teams the Mad Ants could face in the first-round, best-of-three series, hadn’t been determined going into Saturday night and will either be Iowa, Sioux Falls or Rio Grande Valley, all of which are 30-19.

The Mad Ants, who were swept in their first playoff appearance last season by Santa Cruz, could choose to face one of those teams or Santa Cruz (28-21), Reno (27-22) or Canton (28-22).

“We’ve got to look at who’s playing well and who’s not playing well. I think that’s got to be factored into it,” said Mad Ants President Jeff Potter, who must determine his playoff opponent today.

The Mad Ants would start on the road and then return to Memorial Coliseum for Game 2 and, if necessary, Game 3.

“There’s distance,” Potter said. “Do we want to travel across the country to play a game, and then all the way back? That’s something to consider.

“And the other thing we have to consider is will we be playing a team that has an NBA affiliation? You have to look and see because there’s the potential that guys will be assigned (by their NBA team) to stack their roster for the playoffs.”

The Mad Ants are 3-3 against Canton, 1-0 against Santa Cruz, 3-2 against Sioux Falls, 6-3 against Iowa, 0-1 against Rio Grande Valley and 1-0 against Reno.

The Mad Ants have won 17 of their last 20 games.

Fort Wayne has six NBA affiliates – Indiana, Detroit, Milwaukee, Orlando, Charlotte and Memphis – but the team doesn’t expect anyone to get sent down for the D-League playoffs.

“For me, these are the guys who got me here, and I want to roll with them,” Potter said.

jcohn@jg.net

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