NBA Betting Odds, Picks, Predictions: Our Best Bets for Kings vs. Mavericks & Rockets vs. Lakers (October 31)
Chris Elise/Getty Images. Pictured: LeBron James
There are five NBA games today on Halloween, and three of our Action Network NBA analysts have their eyes on a pair of games.
Raheem Palmer and Roberto Arguello are on the same side of the Kings vs. Mavericks game while Malik Smith is betting the late-night matchup between the Rockets and Lakers.
Check out their best bets below.
NBA Odds & Picks
Sacramento Kings vs. Dallas Mavericks
Roberto Arguello: The Dallas Mavericks rank dead last in the NBA in Spread Differential (per Cleaning The Glass) as they have failed to cover by an average of 9.8 points per game. After having one of the elite offenses in the history of the league two years ago, the Mavs took a step back last year after trading away Seth Curry, but they remained above average.
Through five games with Jason Kidd, however, the offense has fallen off a cliff as they rank 28th in Offensive Rating (99.3). They are 3-2 on the season, but in their two games against playoff teams from last year, they lost by over 20 points each time.
I’ll ride with the Kings today (and bet them down to +3.5) as Harrison Barnes has started the season shooting the lights out by making 52.8% of his 3s while the Kings’ defense has improved significantly from last year. I like the idea of Davion Mitchell making life tough for Luka Doncic, who is making just 25.7% of his 3s (and the Mavs as a whole are shooting just 31.0%).
Sacramento Kings vs. Dallas Mavericks
Raheem Palmer: There’s no greater coaching downgrade in the NBA than going from Rick Carlisle to Jason Kidd. The Mavericks are 3-2 on the season, but as Roberto noted, they went from the best offense in NBA history two seasons ago to having the league’s 28th ranked offense, scoring just 99.3 points per 100 possessions in their non garbage time minutes.
A large part of their struggles is tied to their poor shooting from deep — just 31.8% from behind the arc, which ranks 24th among NBA teams. Mix in a defense that ranks 18th in Defensive Rating (107.7) and you have to wonder why this team is laying 4.5 points against the scrappy Kings.
My model actually makes this game a pick’em, but I think the Kings have many advantages here. The Kings should be able score at the rim against a Mavericks team that ranks 23rd in opponent field goal percentage at the rim (66.4%) and from behind the arc where the Mavericks struggle to defend allowing opposing teams to make 38.8% of their attempts.
Overall, I’m looking to fade this Mavericks team and +4.5 I have to take the pants with the Kings.
Houston Rockets vs. Los Angeles Lakers
Malik Smith: The Lakers’ struggles at the end of games has been well documented, but that has overshadowed their ability to jump out to huge leads so far this season. They lead the NBA in Pace in the first half and are 10th in Offensive Rating over the first two quarters, per NBA Advanced Stats.
Their first-half team total for tonight’s game against the Rockets is set at 59.5. This season they’ve had a 72-point first half against the Oklahoma City Thunder and two 60-point efforts in the first half of their games against the San Antonio Spurs and Memphis Grizzlies. They fell short of that number by a half point in the season opener against the Warriors.
The Lakers have a lot of work to do if they hope to compete for a championship, but against a young, rebuilding Rockets team that ranks 25th in Defensive Rating in first halves, the Lakers should not have an issue putting up another 60-point opening half.
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