With just 3 weeks of the regular season remaining in the CBA, the league’s playoff races have drawn the attention of fans across the country. From promotion to relegation to entry to the Tournament of Champions and Presidents Cup, teams have it all to play for as 2024 comes to a close.
The Dallas Devils have all but wrapped up the regular season Premier League title as they hold a 9 game lead over the Florida Giants with just 16 games to play. Florida looks to have locked up their place in the Tournament of Champions but the other two Premier League entrants remain up in the air. Defending champion Detroit sits in third while Chicago is just a game back in fourth. The Midwest Plainsmen are 2 games back of Chicago and will look to make a late season surge to unseat one of those teams and crash the playoff party. The top 7 teams will qualify for next season’s Presidents Cup, but more importantly, they will avoid the possibility of relegation. Denver has begun to slip dangerously close to the relegation zone, now just 4 games ahead of 8th. Arizona has a 1 game lead over Cincinnati for 7th place and to avoid a place in the relegation playoffs. The Thunderbirds and Royals play each other 4 times this week in a series that will likely decide who plays for relegation. The Great Lakes Monster have played better of late but still look destined for 10th and the automatic relegation to the Silver League. The New York Roar are in 9th and will likely go on the road for 2 games in the relegation series against either Arizona or Cincinnati.
One team at the top of the Silver League is going to be very upset at the end of the season. As we reach the end of the season, the race for promotion to the Premier League has become a 3 horse race. Sacramento has a 1 game lead over both Portland and Philadelphia for Silver League lead. One of these teams will receive their golden ticket to the Premier League for winning the SL while the other two will have to battle it out in a best of 3 promotion series. At the end of the day, one of these three teams will be playing in the SL again in 2025. This is going to be a fun race to follow. At the other end of the standings, an equally compelling relegation battle is taking place. Just 4 games separate 6th place Miami from 10th place Salt Lake City. The reigning Bronze League Champions Miami Warriors should escape the drop and could challenge Oklahoma and Atlanta for a top 5 finish and a spot in next year’s Presidents Cup. The Austin Outlaws have a favorable schedule to round out their season and if their offense can stay hot they too are likely to avoid the drop to the Bronze League. This would leave the Boston Rogers, Mexico City Chupacabras, and Salt Lake City Snappers battling to stay in the Silver League with room for only 1 of them to stay around for 2025.
Luckily, the Bronze League doesn’t have to worry about relegation. The bottom 6 in the Bronze League are safe in the CBA, no one is revoking their membership. At least, as far as I know. DC has recently surged to first place in the BL and the young Eagles look poised to ride their hot streak to the Silver League. Iowa and Los Angeles won’t go down without a fight however, with just 2 games separating DC from third place LA. Brooklyn could still play spoiler, the Bulldogs are 4 games back of the Chilis for a spot in the promotion playoff.
It’s going to be a fun 3 weeks for CBA fans with record attendance expected in most markets. Who is going up, who is going down, and who is going to the playoffs and the prestigious Presidents Cup? Here are my predictions:
PL Top 4: Dallas, Florida, Detroit, Chicago
PL Relegation Playoff: Arizona vs New York (Arizona wins)
PL Automatic Relegation: Great Lakes
SL Automatic Promotion: Portland
SL Promotion Playoff: Sacramento vs Philadelphia (Sacramento wins)
SL Top 5: Portland, Sacramento, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Miami
SL Relegation Playoff: Mexico City vs Boston (Mexico City wins)
SL Automatic Relegation: Salt Lake City
BL Automatic Promotion: DC
BL Promotion Playoff: Iowa vs Los Angeles (Los Angeles wins)