NBA Playoff Odds: The Dallas Mavericks’ 2021 Title Chances
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images. Pictured: Luka Doncic #77 of the Dallas Mavericks.
Dallas Mavericks NBA Playoff Odds
How the Dallas Mavericks Got Here
Year 2 of the Luka Doncic-Kristaps Porzingis was pretty similar to the first, albeit with less spectacular results. The Mavericks easily had the best offense in the league last season.
Though they didn’t reach the same lofty heights in the 2021 season, Dallas still posted an elite offensive rating and finished as the fifth seed in the Western Conference, avoiding the Play-In tournament that Luka Doncic was not thrilled about.
Doncic did his part this season, posting a career-high effective field goal percentage despite once again taking on a massive offensive workload. With Doncic continuing to fire on all cylinders, it was expected that Kristaps Porzingis would finally have a superstar-caliber season. That didn’t exactly happen.
Again battling through nagging injuries, Porzingis played less than a full season but posted a solid 20.1 points per game (PPG) while shooting 37.6% from the 3-point line.
A stretch-five (i.e. “a center who can shoot 3-pointers”) of his caliber is still necessary to get the most out of Doncic, but Mavs coach Rick Carlisle will undoubtedly need more from Porzingis in the postseason.
Instead of Porzingis, Tim Hardaway Jr. and Jalen Brunson have been the players to take their games up another level this season. Brunson specifically, has been very impressive in posting career-best marks in PPG (12.6) and 3-point percentage (40.5%).
From a betting perspective, Brunson and Hardaway played a large hand in helping the Mavericks finish strong Against The Spread (ATS) to close the season, covering in five of their last eight games.
On the season Dallas was 35-37 ATS and though they went under on the total more than over, the Mavericks went over in five straight games to end the regular season. I would expect a higher-scoring series than expected since Dallas will have quite an uphill battle against a Clippers team that posted the third-best offensive rating in the league (116.7 points per 100 possessions).