Friday NBA Odds & Picks for Mavericks vs. Jazz: Bet Dallas If Donovan Mitchell Sits (January 29)
Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Kristaps Porzingis dunks over Rudy Gobert.
- The Dallas Mavericks and Utah Jazz meet on Friday night with Utah riding a 10-game winning streak.
- One of those wins came on Wednesday night against Dallas despite missing its star Donovan Mitchell.
- Is there value in the Jazz streak continuing, or will Dallas put an end to it?
Mavericks vs. Jazz Odds
|Moneyline||+143 / -175|
|Time||10 p.m. ET|
A rematch from Wednesday brings a matchup between the Jazz and Mavericks. Dallas will hope things go much differently as a slow start put the Mavs in a 21-point halftime deficit. Changing the outcome starts with rebounding as Utah bullied Dallas on the boards, winning the rebound battle 60-44.
For Utah, the victory over Dallas was another win to tack on its now 10-game streak. Not only have the Jazz been winning, but they have done so handily, winning nine of the 10 by double-digits. This win is one of the more impressive of the streak since it came without star Donovan Mitchell. If Mitchell misses again, it will be up to center Rudy Gobert to repeat his dominant 29-point performance.
An opening spread of just four points implies Mitchell is unlikely to play. Let’s dig deeper to see if the Jazz can overcome his absence again.
Not much has gone right for Dallas, which is just 3-6 since the return of Kristaps Porzingis. The big man’s return looked set to fix both their rebounding and interior scoring problems. Instead, they now lose the rebounding battle by six per game instead of 1.5. On offense, the change is much slighter as they dropped down to 108.7 points per game from 110.0.
However, despite the recent struggles, optimism lies on the horizon.
The first area of improvement will be on coaching and chemistry. Of Dallas’ top six players in minutes per game, only two have played in 10 or more games. Rick Carlisle’s rotations have plenty of room for improvement, and should find it once guys get healthy and start playing meaningful minutes together. This will improve individual play as well as on-court chemistry, benefiting the team going forward.
It’s clear Dallas, with its league-worst 33.2% from three-point range, is not a good shooting team. However, since the return of Porzingis, the Mavericks’ 30.9% from behind the arc is unimaginably low for a team in the modern NBA. Porzingis has been a large part of this, only shooting 29.4% on 6.4 three-point attempts per game. That’s concerning, of course, but Porzingis’ number is far below his career mark of 35.5%. Some positive regressions should be on the way, if nothing else.
Utah turned to Gobert and Jordan Clarkson to guide the offense without its primary scorer on Wednesday. The duo exceeded expectations, scoring a combined 60 points on only 41 field-goal attempts. Forward Joe Ingles also played a major as he had the hot hand, shooting 7-of-11 from three-point range. Now that the Mavs have seen Utah’s game plan without Mitchell, replicating this level of production will be more difficult.
One area the Jazz can rely on is their accuracy from deep. Utah has utilized the three-pointer to distinguish itself from the pack, hitting on 39.7% of their attempts so far this season. And they’ve done so while taking the second most threes per 100 possessions in the league.
Effective shooting forces the defense out of the paint and creates an opportunity for the big men inside. Known for his defense, Gobert typically plays only a minor role on offense. But on Wednesday, Quin Snyder chose to attack with his big man, resulting in a career-high 20 field goal attempts from Gobert.
Without Mitchell on Wednesday, Utah blitzed Dallas in the first half and got 15-plus points from each of Gobert, Ingles, and Clarkson. The Mavericks’ halftime adjustments put a stop to that in the second half, and while it didn’t result in a Dallas win, it showed the Mavs have a recipe is in place for how to attack the Mitchell-less Jazz.
Expect Carlisle & Co. to be prepared to avoid a repeat of Wednesday’s result. Back the Mavericks to end Utah’s winning streak.
Pick: Mavs +4 (if Mitchell doesn’t play)