Mavericks vs Thunder Picks, Prediction Today | NBA Odds for Thursday, March 14

Mavericks vs Thunder Picks, Prediction Today | NBA Odds for Thursday, March 14 article feature image
Credit:

Pictured: Kyrie Irving of the Mavericks and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander of the Thunder for Action Network’s odds, picks, and prediction for Dallas vs. Oklahoma City.

Mavericks vs. Thunder Odds

Thursday, Mar. 14
10 p.m. ET
TNT
Mavericks Odds
SpreadOver/UnderMoneyline
+10
-110
236.5
-110/-110
+350
Thunder Odds
SpreadOver/UnderMoneyline
-10
-110
236.5
-110/-110
-455
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

As the Dallas Mavericks face the Oklahoma City Thunder on Thursday, Mar. 14, we dive into our expert prediction and betting picks for today's  game on TNT at 10 p.m. ET.

Just when the Dallas Mavericks are starting to find their groove and mount a push into the top-six in the Western Conference, an injury to Luka Doncic threatens to derail their plans. Doncic left Wednesday's game against the Warriors with under seven minutes remaining in the fourth quarter after informing the team of tightness in his left hamstring.

Dallas was already ahead 92-74 when Doncic headed for the locker room and won the game 109-99. His impact on the team can't be overstated, considering he leads the league with a 36% Usage Rate, per Basketball-Reference.com.

Next up for the Mavericks is a trip to Oklahoma City (OKC) to face a Thunder team that lost 146-111 in their last meeting in February. The Thunder opened as 6.5-point favorites, but that number is now up to 10 because Doncic will likely be ruled out of this matchup.

We've also seen a move with the total from 242.5 down to 237.5.

When you combine the line movement with a potential revenge spot for OKC, this matchup requires a bit of creativity in identifying a play that will offer some value.


Registration is live for the best North Carolina sports betting apps! Register for bonus offers as the state launched this week (March 11).


Can the Mavericks Defense Step Up?

Pick: Two-leg Parlay +100: Thunder -4.5 & Under 241 Points

Although Doncic will likely come up short in the MVP race to Nikola Jokic, his odds should be much lower than 10-1. In addition to Usage Rate, he also leads the league with 34.3 points per game while averaging 9.8 assists and nine rebounds.

Doncic is vital to a Dallas offense that scores roughly nine fewer points (110.88) when he's out of the lineup.

The Mavericks already rank 22nd in assists (25.5 per game), so Doncic's potential absence will undoubtedly impact their ability to create shots.

If there were one area you could be critical of the Mavericks, it would undoubtedly be on defense. NBA.com lists Dallas 21st in Defensive Efficiency (116.7), but during this four-game winning streak, the Mavericks' 106.8 Defensive Rating is tied for the third-best mark in the league.

Moreover, limiting the Warriors to just 99 points is an impressive accomplishment.

This Mavericks' defense certainly bears watching because it could be the missing piece for this team to make a deep playoff run.


Thunder Are a Complete Team

The other team the Mavericks share the third-best Defensive Rating with over the last week is the Thunder. However, their defensive prowess shouldn't come as a surprise, considering they rank fifth in Defensive Efficiency over the course of the season.

Oklahoma City is exceptional in its ability to protect the rim with Chet Holmgren at the base of the defense. TeamRankings lists the Thunder fourth in points allowed in the paint with 46.9 per game. OKC also leads the league with 6.7 blocks per game.

When they're not blocking shots, the Thunder are turning opponents over. Oklahoma City ranks third in steals (8.2 per game) and first in opponent turnovers per game (15.6).

The Thunder can still create a lot of havoc on the defensive end despite not being as dominant at guarding the perimeter. OKC ranks 25th in both opponent 3-point attempts (37.0) and 3-point field goals allowed (13.4).

However, it's possible that teams are attempting more 3-pointers later in later stages against the Thunder as they chase late in the game. The Thunder's +7.7 Point Differential is only second to that of the Boston Celtics at +11.2.

We also can't overlook OKC's efficient offense, which ranks third with a 119.0 Offensive Rating. Overall, this is a complete team and one of only two in the NBA ranked in the top five for both Offensive and Defensive Efficiency.


Mavericks vs. Thunder

Betting Pick & Prediction

I think we have to show some respect for the market here, after Thunder became 10-point favorites. It would be perilous for the Mavericks to play Doncic on the second leg of a back-to-back with a possible hamstring problem.

If you've ever had a hamstring injury, you know the recovery likely will take weeks — not days. The last thing the Mavericks want to do is push Doncic and risk aggravating the injury even more, especially with the playoffs beginning next month.

Using the GimmeTheDog database, I examined how the Mavericks performed this season when Doncic was inactive. They're currently 3-5 straight up in this spot, 4-4 against the spread (ATS), and the total is 4-3-1 to the under.

However, if we adjust our parameters to include only games where the Mavericks were underdogs of eight or more points, they're 0-3 straight up, 1-2 ATS, and the total is 2-0-1 to the under.

As a result, I want to target the spread and total in a parlay. Reducing the Thunder's point spread to -4.5 and combining it with an alternate total under 241 points gives me an even money parlay at +100 odds via BetRivers.

Pick: Two-leg Parlay +100: Thunder -4.5 & Under 241 Points (BetRivers)

How would you rate this article?

This site contains commercial content. We may be compensated for the links provided on this page. The content on this page is for informational purposes only. Action Network makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy of the information given or the outcome of any game or event.

Sportsbook Promos
See All
Legal Online Sports Betting

bet365 Bonus Code TOPACTION: Grab a $1K First Bet or $150 Guaranteed Bonus for Mavs-Wolves, Any Wednesday Game

Doug Ziefel
May 22, 2024 UTC