Only a half-game separates the Warriors and Mavericks as they battle it out tonight for the 6th seed in the Western Conference. Tonight’s game between them tips off at 7:30 pm ET on ESPN, and I’ve prepared a Same Game Parlay which you can find below.
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Bad habits don’t go away overnight, so I’m not really sure why everyone is expecting the Warriors to all of a sudden go on a roll in road games after winning just their first game away from home since January. At 8-29 SU they’re among the 4 worst road teams in the league this season, along with the Detroit Pistons, Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs. Tonight they’re going up against a Dallas team which has beaten them 5 times in their last 6 visits to American Airlines Center and with a 3-6 SU/ATS record over their last 9 games overall I’m not sure they can get anything out of this one. The Mavericks also haven’t had the best of times lately, but with the expected return of Luka Doncic and a fresh Kyrie Irving they’ll be a tough out for whoever gets them in the first round. They have won 2 of their last 3 games and covered the spread in 4 of their last 5. Getting Doncic back would be massive as he’s always motivated to do well against Steph Curry. In the last game against Golden State he had a 41-point, 12-rebound, 12-assist triple double, which was his second game in a row against them with over 40 points. I’ll be backing the Mavs.
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Steph Curry seems to be the obvious choice to back for a good scoring game. His backcourt buddy Klay Thompson has averaged just 12.5 points per game in his last 7 regular-season games against Dallas, so it will be up to Steph to keep the Warriors in this game. Andrew Wiggins is also out, that’s another 20 points Steve Kerr has to make up from somewhere. If we include the playoffs, Steph has had 30+ points 3 times in his last 6 against the Mavs, and he’s been on a tear lately, averaging 30.3 per game in his last 10. He already has a 50-point game on this current road trip, so don’t be surprised if he goes off again. Dallas does a solid job at defending the perimeter, but its major weakness is defending the paint, where the Mavs have allowed 54.7 points per game in their last 3. If the Warriors attack and their defense collapses, that should open things up for Steph from deep. We can only hope he gets going early.
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With a defensive rating of 119.7 in road games, the Warriors rank 28th in the league this season with only the Spurs and Rockets behind them. Teams have scored 120+ points on them in 9 of their last 11 away from home, and they’re leaking points all over the place. Playing at a high pace definitely has something to do with that as they average 102.7 possessions per game on the road, so even the slow-paced Mavericks should have a productive offensive game. Defending the perimeter is another thing the Warriors have struggled with over their last 3 games with opponents shooting 38.3%. Since the arrival of Kyrie Irving the Mavericks are averaging 119.8 points per game on 49.5% shooting from the field, so even if Doncic doesn’t suit up the Mavs are in a solid position offensively.
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