Knicks vs. Mavericks NBA Odds & Picks: Back High-Scoring Game on Friday in Dallas (April 16)
Glenn James/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Luka Doncic.
- Two teams with offensive stars playing at a very high level meet on Friday night.
- RJ Barrett and Julius Randle are thriving for New York, while Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis are just hitting their stride.
- Roberto Arguello breaks down where he sees betting value between these teams.
Knicks vs. Mavericks Odds
|Moneyline||+170 / -200|
|Time||Friday, 9:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds as of Thursday and via PointsBet|
The Mavericks host the Knicks on Friday night in the second and final meeting between these teams this season. The Mavericks beat the Knicks 99-86 on April second at Madison Square Garden behind a game-high 26 points from Luka Doncic.
The Knicks go into Dallas with a season-high four-game winning streak after beating the Pelicans 116-106 on Wednesday night in New Orleans. The Mavericks are also looking to build on Wednesday’s win, during which Doncic hit a ridiculous buzzer-beating 3-pointer to give Dallas a one-point win over the Grizzlies.
New York Knicks
If the Knicks cover as road underdogs, they will need RJ Barrett and Julius Randle at their best. It will be important that Barrett and Randle stretch the Mavericks’ defense with their ability to drive the basketball and shoot from beyond the arc.
After struggling shooting 3-pointers as a rookie and early this season, Barrett has shot 45% from deep since the start of February ,which ranks in the 90th percentile among wings. Barrett has played the best basketball of his career lately, and he is one of just five players in the NBA who is averaging at least 18 points and five rebounds while shooting over 42% on 3-pointers over the last three months. The others are Nikola Jokic, Kevin Durant, Zach LaVine and Steph Curry.
Randle, one of the frontrunners for the Most Improved Player Award, is coming off consecutive 30-point games for the first time this season.
The Knicks will also need Randle and Barrett to step up as playmakers. They are more than capable as distributors as Randle’s assist rate (26.9%) ranks in the 98th percentile among bigs while Barrett’s (13.8%) ranks in the 80th percentile among wings. The Knicks will also need to continue playing elite defense while secondary scorers step up.
Reggie Bullock’s shooting will be key for the Knicks as he is making 43.1% of his 3-point shots and scoring 13.5 points per game in April. Both would be personal season-highs for any month this season. His shooting will be important for the Knicks to space the floor to provide Barrett and Randle enough room to slash to the rim.
Alec Burks has been hit-or-miss recently, having scored 19 or more points or eight or fewer points in the last eight games. If he can give the Knicks efficient playmaking, they will have a great chance of pulling the upset.
Nerlens Noel (ankle) is officially listed as questionable, but he is expected to play Friday. Mitchell Robinson (foot) remains out indefinitely.
If the Mavericks win and cover, they will need Doncic to continue playing great basketball while their defense continues to improve.
The Mavericks have gotten elite play from Doncic, and he has gotten better as the season has progressed with his 3-point shooting has improved each month.
Doncic shot 9.5% from beyond the arc in December, 33.0% in January, 43.5% in February and 39.3% since March 1. Doncic’s 119.9 points per 100 shots rank in the 76th percentile among wings while his 42.1% assist rate ranks in the 100th percentile.
Doncic will need to make smart decisions against an elite Knicks defense that is second in field goal percentage allowed at the rim (60.4%) and leads the league in 3-point accuracy allowed (33.6%).
Kristaps Porzingis has started to heat up lately with at least 21 points in five consecutive games. Since the Mavericks shifted how they rest Porzingis and Doncic on Feb. 1, Porzingis has been better able to find his rhythm as he plays longer at the beginning of games.
Before the shift, the Mavericks’ offense was averaging 110.9 points per 100 possessions (this would rank as the 17th most efficient offense this season), but since then, they’re scoring 117.8 points per 100 possessions (which would lead the NBA over the entire season in offensive efficiency).
While Doncic and Porzingis will be key against the Knicks, players like Jalen Brunson and Tim Hardaway Jr. will also need to make shots and step up as creators when Doncic is off the court. Brunson, a contender to be Sixth Man of the Year, has been incredibly efficient this season as his 126.1 points per 100 shots rank in the 99th percentile among combo guards (per Cleaning The Glass). Mavericks bigs like Maxi Kleber and Dwight Powell will also need to step up inside on the boards against an above-average rebounding Knicks team.
Both teams have been playing quality basketball recently as key offensive players like Doncic, Porzingis, Randle and Barrett are all potentially playing the best basketball of their careers. Combine this with important secondary scorers like Brunson and Bullock also playing well lately, and I love the value on the over.
Both teams will be well-rested and nearly at full strength heading into this game, and there is value on the over after the previous matchup between these teams was ridiculously low-scoring. Neither team could make shots in that matchup, and I expect the offenses to have the upper hand after having time to game-plan to fix their mistakes from the matchup a fortnight ago. Take advantage of a low total and take the over with value up to 213.5 total points.
Pick: Over 210.5 (bet up to 213.5)