Mavericks vs. Spurs Odds & Picks: Take San Antonio and the Points in Texas-Sized Showdown (Jan. 22)
Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images. Pictured: The Spurs’ DeMar DeRozan
- The Mavericks are coming off an impressive win over the Pacers amid a breakout by Kristaps Porzingis.
- However, Dallas is shorthanded and in the middle of a tough road stretch.
- Read Austin Wang's analysis of this all-Texas matchup below, including a betting prediction.
Mavericks vs. Spurs Odds
|Moneyline||-144 / +122|
|Time||8:30 p.m. ET|
|TV||NBA League Pass|
Saddle up for a showdown between the Dallas Mavericks and San Antonio Spurs on Friday. These two teams will be meeting for the first time this season in the I-35 Rivalry, named after Interstate 35, which connects the two major Texas cities.
These two teams have played in six playoff series dating back to 2001, with the Spurs besting the Mavericks 4-2. There is some bad blood between them and it’s typically a fun rivalry game to watch. Although the Mavericks may possess more star power, there is value on the Spurs as underdogs in Friday’s matchup.
The Mavericks have faced much adversity this season with key rotational players missing because of COVID-19 protocol; yet, they are still hanging at 7-7.
Josh Richardson, Dorian Finney-Smith, Maxi Kleber and Dwight Powell have all missed five (or more) games this season. All four average at least 20 minutes per game. The Mavericks have had to find production out of players like James Johnson and Willie Cauley-Stein. Johnson may be able to help you win a fight with his black belt, but he’s not knocking down jump shots.
After getting blown out in two consecutive games, the Mavericks had a nice bounce-back against the Indiana Pacers. One bright spot was that Kristaps Porzingis had a breakout game and caught fire with 27 points on 12-of-15 shooting from the field. He has now been back for five games and has steadily shaken off the rust and improved each game. He must stay healthy and continue this level of play if the Mavericks hope to have any championship aspirations.
Luka Doncic’s shoulders might be getting heavy from carrying the load. He had his fifth triple-double of the season against the Pacers and is 0.5 assists per game away from averaging a triple double for the season. However, his shooting has suffered, as he has gone a combined 22-of-56 (39.3%) from the field in the last three games. Dejounte Murray is a feisty defender who I believe can help contain Doncic.
The Mavericks are in a tough stretch with a thin lineup. They are playing their third straight road game and fifth in their last six games. This is also the first leg of a back-to-back as they face Houston on Saturday. The Mavericks should go on a roll once they are at full health, but it appears they will be shorthanded again on Friday night, which might make it difficult for them to cover as favorites.
Since 2018, teams on their third consecutive road game and the first leg of a back-to-back have gone 27-51-3 (34.6%) against the spread, per the Sports Data Query Language database. This is active as a fade against the Mavericks.
San Antonio Spurs
The Spurs have exceeded expectations with an 8-7 record to start the season. Players like Lonnie Walker IV, Dejounte Murray and Keldon Johnson are all late first-round draft picks who have blossomed into solid players. They help provide a solid supporting cast to veteran centerpieces DeMar DeRozan and LaMarcus Aldridge. Patty Mills has been on fire to start the season, coming off the bench for instant offense and shooting 42.6% from behind the arc.
The Spurs have been playing a bit of Jekyll and Hyde as of late. After a dominating performance against the Portland Trail Blazers on Monday, they put a dud against the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday, getting dominated by 21 points. They shot an abysmal 37.2% from the field and went only 4-of-33 from behind the arc. After a two-game road trip, they are returning home looking for a win.
The Spurs protect the ball and average the fewest turnovers in the league. Per NBA Advanced Stats, they are No. 1 in Assist-to-Turnover Ratio (2.51) through Tuesday’s games. The ball movement and efficiency on offense should help against the tired Mavericks’ defense. They distribute the ball well and have seven players averaging double figures in scoring.
Since 2018, the Spurs are 27-10 (73%) ATS after a loss where they made fewer than 10 3-pointers, per the SDQL database.
Since 2018, the Spurs are 8-0 ATS as underdogs after a loss on the road where there were four or fewer lead changes, per the SDQL database. Gregg Popovich consistently has his team ready after a one-sided loss.
While the Mavericks have the two best players in Doncic and Porzingis, the Spurs have the edge with depth. The Mavericks’ rotation is depleted and they’ve had a brutal schedule and are on the first half of a back-to-back.
Given all those circumstances, I have this game closer to a pick, and with the line fluctuating between 2-3, I will gladly take the points with the home underdogs.
Pick: Spurs +3 (Would bet to +2)