Clippers vs. Mavericks Odds & Pick: Expect LA’s Stars to Take Over On Thursday

Credit:

Getty Images. Pictured (L-R): Los Angeles Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard, Dallas Mavericks forward Luka Doncic.

  • The Los Angeles Clippers are 4-point favorites against the Dallas Mavericks on Thursday night.
  • Where's the betting value on the matchup? Raheem Palmer breaks down the odds and makes his pick.

Clippers vs. Mavericks Betting Odds

Clippers odds -4 [BET NOW]
Mavericks odds +4 [BET NOW]
Moneyline -175/+145 [BET NOW]
Over/Under 230.5 [BET NOW]
Time 6:30 p.m. ET
TV TNT

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On Wednesday afternoon, the Los Angeles Clippers and the Dallas Mavericks tip off for a possible first round playoff preview. With the the Clippers currently holding the second seed in the Western Conference and the Mavericks all but locked into the No. 7 seed, it’s seems inevitable that we’ll see these teams squaring off in a series in two weeks.

The Clippers have the Mavericks’ number this season, defeating them 114-99 as 1.5 point road favorites on Nov. 26 and defeating them again as 2.5 point road underdogs 110-107 on Jan. 21.

Where is the value in this matchup? Let’s break it down.

Los Angeles Clippers

The Clippers are coming off a heartbreaking loss to the Phoenix Suns on a Devin Booker buzzer-beater that was defended by both Paul George and Kawhi Leonard. 

The Clippers’ starting lineup of Patrick Beverly, Paul George, Marcus Morris, Kawhi Leonard & Ivica Zubac have played a total of 11 games for 147 minutes, and have a net rating of 22.9 points per 100 possessions, per NBA Advanced Stats. 

Whether it’s through load management or injuries, the Clippers have been without a complete team for most of the season. Although Leonard and George are finally healthy, the bubble hasn’t provided the Clippers with any lineup continuity.

Montrezl Harrell hasn’t returned to the team as he grieves the loss of his grandmother. Beverley has been ruled out of Thursday’s game against the Mavericks with a calf strain. 

However, the Clippers have some good news on the roster front as Lou Williams returned from his quarantine absence with 7 points, 6 rebounds and 6 assist in Tuesday’s loss against the Suns.

The Clippers are a championship contender, but it remains to be seen if this team has played enough basketball together to have built good habits and chemistry. 

Dallas Mavericks

The Mavericks have statistically been one of the greatest offenses of all time, scoring 115.7 points per 100 possessions. Unfortunately, their historically great offense hasn’t translated to clutch situations (defined as the last five minutes of a game in which the point differential is five points or less). 

The Mavericks rank 23rd in clutch win percentage, losing 23 games this season in clutch situations. In the clutch, their historically great offensive rating drops to 95.4, giving them a clutch-time net rating of -12.7. The Mavericks opened the restart of the NBA season by blowing an eight-point, fourth-quarter lead to the Rockets, followed by a blown second-half lead to the Suns.

Given the Mavericks’ clutch-time woes, their comeback win against Sacramento was impressive. Led by Luka Doncic’s 34 points, 20 rebounds and 12 assists, the Mavericks got seven stops in a row to end regulation, scored the final six points in to force overtime and eventually got the victory in one of their ugliest wins of the season.

Are the Mavericks turning the corner? It remains to be seen, but for a young team, these are the first steps.

Betting Analysis & Pick

The Clippers are the worst possible matchup for the Mavericks. Even with the absence of Beverley, the Clippers have two superstars on the perimeter who are capable of guarding Doncic if necessary.

On the other end of the floor, the Mavericks don’t have the wings capable of slowing down Leonard and George. Although Dorian Finney Smith typically guards the most dangerous wing on opposing teams, the Mavericks are stuck when going up against a team like the Clippers who have two. In some ways, it feels as if the Mavericks are drawing dead trying to stop this offense.

The Clippers are one of the deepest teams in the league and even without Harrell and there’s still instant offense off the bench in Williams.

It’s necessary to note, the Mavericks are also facing an injury to Seth Curry. Curry is shooting 45% from deep on 5.1 attempts per game. He has seen his minutes replaced by JJ Barea and Trey Burke who are major liabilities on defense. The loss of Jalen Brunson and Dwight Powell has made a deep Dallas roster thin in terms of depth.

I like the Clippers in this matchup. They are a half game up on the Denver Nuggets for the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference and a loss would mean there’s a chance they could face the Houston Rockets in the first round.

Lay the 4 points with the Clippers. They should win and cover this one.

The Pick: Clippers -4

[Bet $20+ on the LA Clippers at PointsBet and Win $125 if they make at least one 3-pointer]

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