Mavericks vs. Kings NBA Odds & Picks: Back Dallas to Stay Hot Against Sacramento (Monday, April 26)
Tom Pennington/Getty Images. Pictured: Luka Doncic.
- The Mavericks have won three straight and have the coveted six seed in the Western Conference.
- Dallas can strengthen its grip on that spot against the Kings, who will be without leading-scorer De'Aaron Fox.
- Phillip Kall breaks down the game and where the betting value lies.
Mavericks vs. Kings Odds
|Moneyline||-250 / +190|
|Time||Monday, 10 p.m. ET|
|Odds as of Sunday and via BetMGM|
Thanks to the Trail Blazers’ current struggles, the Dallas Mavericks find themselves in the sixth seed entering Monday night’s game against the Kings, which is crucial given this year’s playoff format.
With three weeks left in the NBA season, though, anything can happen. This matchup with the Sacramento Kings will be a good test for a Mavericks young core to see how it can perform with real implications on the line.
Once again, the Kings will need to wait another year for their young core to potentially play such meaningful games. At 24-35, Sacramento still does have hopes of reaching the 10th seed technically, but 5 1/2 games seem insurmountable. Adding insult to injury, the Kings lost point guard De’Aaron Fox to health and safety protocols. As the season draws to its end, improving its draft stock looks to be all Sacramento can do.
This game is not one Dallas can afford to lose if it hopes to hang onto the six seed. Let’s look further to see if the Mavericks can also beat the spread on Monday night.
After an ugly 2-5 stretch, Dallas has found the right path once again, having won three straight. The wins have not been the most impressive, though, as they have come against the shorthanded Lakers (twice) and Pistons. However, this could be their start to a hot streak that supplies momentum all the way to the playoffs.
This will be the Mavericks’ second matchup against the Kings, and they will hope the outcome is much different. Dallas lost the first meeting two Sundays ago by 14 points because they had no answer for Fox, who finished the game with 30 points on 12-for-21 shooting and 12 assists. Fortunately for the Mavs, he’ll miss this one.
While Fox’s absences will make things easier for Dallas, it will need to get its performance up to their standards. The Mavs rank 10th in Offensive Rating per Basketball Reference but scored and showed below their averages in that matchup.
Having off-nights is a completely normal thing for offenses, however, against the Kings, it is very shocking. Sacramento’s 118.7 Defensive Rating is so bad that it actually outpaces the Clippers’ top-ranked Offensive Rating.
Dallas should be in an excellent position to take down the Kings. The Mavericks’ offense has been clicking shooting 49.2% from the field and 39.2% from 3-point during their win streak. On the defensive end, the Kings being without their leading scorer and floor general will make Dallas’ job much easier.
Going ice cold since the beginning of April has all but eliminated the Kings from the playoffs. Sacramento’s 2-9 record this month is only better than the Thunder, Magic, and Rockets, all of whom are actively tanking. Their defense continues to play at its atrociously poor level and somehow the poor play spread to the offense.
For the year, Sacramento’s offense ranks 11th in Offensive Rating with a mark of 114.4. This month, their Offensive Rating has plummeted to 21st at 110.9 per NBA.com. Without their starting point guard and leading scorer De’Aaron Fox, raising the efficiency will be even more difficult.
*Sacramento’s record and efficiency were pulled in advance of Sunday’s matchup vs Golden State.
While fully replacing everything Fox brought is unlikely, rookie Tyrese Haliburton has shown he might be a functional fill-in. Haliburton fell to the 12th pick where the Kings swooped them up and he has rewarded them for doing so.
His 12.6 points per game and 5.1 assists per game rank third and second among per Basketball Reference. In addition to the impressive raw stats, Haliburton has played incredibly efficiently. He currently shoots 47.2% from the floor and 41.5% from deep. The big test for him will be his ability to operate as a floor general and facilitate his teammates’ scoring.
As the old adage goes, “When it rains it pours.” That seems to be the ugly situation the Kings find themselves in. A cold streak right as the playoff race picks up then your best player is forced out. Now, they have to face the Mavericks on the second night of a back-to-back. The only silver lining is their back-to-back goes from Golden State to Sacramento so no true travel.
For the Mavs, things have been much more pleasant. They found their offensive rhythm again, playing well in consecutive games against the Lakers impressive D. Then, Portland suffered its massive collapse which propelled Dallas potentially out of the play matchups. Now, they have the chance to further work their way up against a bottom-tier team without its best player.
Back Dallas to take care of business and get closer to securing the playoff spot.
Pick: Mavericks -5.5 to -6.5