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Clippers vs. Mavericks Betting Picks, Betting Odds & Predictions: Will Kawhi Leonard & Co. Lock Down the High-Scoring Mavs?

Clippers vs. Mavericks Betting Picks, Betting Odds & Predictions: Will Kawhi Leonard & Co. Lock Down the High-Scoring Mavs? article feature image

Glenn James/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Kawhi Leonard (2) of the Los Angeles Clippers handles the ball against Luka Doncic (77) of the Dallas Mavericks.

  • The updated betting odds for Tuesday's Los Angeles Clippers vs. Dallas Mavericks matchup has the Mavs as short home favorites (spread: Mavericks -2) with the over/under up to 232.5.
  • Kristaps Porzingis returns to Mavericks lineup after dealing with a sore knee injury, while Paul George will miss tonight's game with a bad hamstring.
  • How are our experts betting this matchup? Below, they'll detail their picks and analysis to help you lock in your bets.

Clippers at Mavericks Picks, Betting Odds & Predictions

  • Spread: Mavericks -2
  • Over/Under: 232.5
  • Time: 8:30 p.m. ET
  • TV Channel: NBA TV

Odds as of Tuesday afternoon and via FanDuel, where Action Network users get a risk-free bet up to $500.

The Los Angeles Clippers head to Dallas to face off with the Mavericks in the lone game on the NBA schedule tonight. Kawhi Leonard and Luka Doncic’s star power are the obvious draw tonight, but this could be a potential playoff matchup based on the current West standings.

What can we expect from both squads tonight? Our crew previews how they’re planning to bet this game below.

Betting Trend to Know

Clippers forward Paul George will miss tonight’s game with a hamstring injury, his 18th game missed already this season. In games that George has missed this season, the Clippers are 11-6 straight up but 9-8 against the spread. John Ewing

Matt Moore: LA’s Defense Slightly Undervalued

The Clippers rank 25th in the NBA at stopping pick-and-roll ball handlers as scorers, per possession (via Synergy Sports). It’s a real weak point. When you throw passes into that, it drops to 12th.

Luka Doncic missed a lot of makeable shots in their first meeting where Dallas scored under 100 points. But so much of what allows opponents to score efficiently vs. the Clippers out of pick-and-roll is the quality of the screening.

The Mavs don’t have great screeners, especially with Kristaps Porzingis (who is active tonight after missing 10 games) , but even he doesn’t set great screens. They mostly slip for either lobs or pops, trusting Doncic to be able to deliver.

But the Clippers’ wing defenders are all super long and disciplined, not just Kawhi Leonard but Moe Harkless, JaMychal Green and Rodney McGruder .

The over in Mavericks’ home games this season is 14-9, but with a total over 225 it goes to 2-3, and 0-1 in games with a total over 230. The public and the money are both on the over, but I think the Clippers drag down the Mavericks’ efficiency enough for this to land under. — Matt Moore

Bryan Mears: How I’m Betting Tonight’s Over/Under

I went back and watched the Mavericks’ offense in the first game against the Clippers on Nov. 26.

The short version: The Clips definitely made sure Doncic wouldn’t beat them, as they consistently pressed him on pick-and-rolls, oftentimes straight doubling with him Patrick Beverley (small, but annoying), George (super long) and others. He was still able to get penetration, because he’s Luka, but they definitely forced others to hit shots.

And man did those guys miss those shots.

Per’s data — and via my eye test watching these attempts — the Mavs got some really good looks. In fact, 27.8% of their shots were considered “wide-open” and 30.4% were considered “open” — a defender 4-6 feet away.

On those attempts, the Mavs posted an atrocious eFG% mark of 35.4%. The film confirms this: They literally couldn’t hit anything despite getting good, open looks at home.

To be fair, the Clips were pretty dialed in, and they have the perimeter length and quickness to close out and bother shooters, especially George. So while some of those shots were technically open, PG was doing his best to make them seem more contested. I’m not sure whether that’s really something you can predict moving forward — the Mavs have nailed those all season — but it’s worth noting.

PG is out this game, and while the data says the Clips defense doesn’t really fall off with him off the floor, I wonder if that will be tested more against a Mavs offense that really needs what makes him so good on that end. The Mavs excel at collapsing defenses and kicking to shooters, making PG’s contests and pick-and-roll defense more valuable than usual.

Some other notes on this matchup: One of the Clippers’ main weaknesses offensively this season has been turning the ball over, and the Mavs are the third-worst team in the league in forcing turnovers. They’ve actually dipped quite a bit defensively of late, ranking 19th in efficiency over the last two weeks.

I think a lot of this game comes down to whether the Mavericks role players hit shots. They didn’t in the first game, which was at home, where role players tend to play better.

As a result, the Mavs were atrocious in the halfcourt, scoring just 78.2 points/100. The Mavs really struggled everywhere, including at the rim, but those things work in tandem. If the shots outside aren’t falling, there’s no reason for the Clippers to not continue to double Luka and pack it in.

Interestingly, that game played at a pretty fast pace, and the Mavs got out in transition and tried to push off live rebounds. They didn’t do much with those opportunities, which was the overall theme of that game. They got good opportunities; they just sucked.

Matt likes the under and thinks the Clippers give the Mavs some fundamental problems. That may be true and may be something I’m not incorporating enough here. But given the data and film I’ve watched, I would actually lean toward the other side in this one. — Bryan Mears

Editor’s note: The opinions on this game are from the individual writers and are based on their research, analysis and perspective. They are independent of, and may not always match with, the algorithm-driven Best Bets from Sports Insights.

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