Thursday, January 27 2022

On Wednesday night, we have a battle for Texas in San Antonio.

The Dallas Mavericks (4-3 SU, 3-5 ATS) are fresh off a home loss at the hands of the Miami Heat, 125-110, after having won four of their previous five games. The Spurs (2-5 SU, 4-3 ATS), on the other hand, just wrapped up a brief three-game road trip in which they went 1-2. The trip included losses to the Mavericks, 104-99, and the Pacers, 131-118, and a win against the Bucks, 102-93, sandwiched in between those two losses.

These two teams met on October 28th, a 104-99 Mavericks win in Dallas. So, will the Spurs exact their early-season revenge or will the Mavericks get back on track just one night after a home loss?

Dallas Mavericks vs. San Antonio Spurs Betting Lines

Point Spread: Mavericks -1

Moneyline: Mavericks -112, Spurs -107

Total: O/U 216

Mavericks Early Season Struggles

While the Mavericks have started the 2021-22 campaign with a respectable 4-3 record, sitting in 5th place in the Western Conference, they haven’t had an impressive win. Their four wins have come against the Raptors, Rockets, Spurs, and Kings. Meanwhile, their three losses have all come by double digits against good teams like the Denver Nuggets, Atlanta Hawks, and the aforementioned Heat.

A lot of these struggles can be linked to the Mavs’ drop-off in offensive prowess. In the Luka Doncic era, the Mavericks have become accustomed to being one of the better offensive teams in the NBA. Per NBA Advanced Stats, the Mavericks were 1st in Offensive Rating in 2019-2020 and 8th in 2020-2021. But under new Head Coach Jason Kidd, they are now 24th in 2021-2022. They’ve also fallen from 7th in effective FG% last season to 26th this season. The Mavericks have also been the luckiest team in the NBA thus far with 1.9 expected wins alongside their 4 actual wins, according to Cleaning The Glass.

Spurs Adjusting to New Identity

In just one offseason, the Spurs watched Patty Mills, Demar Derozan, and Rudy Gay all head to different organizations. For a team that has been characterized by veteran presence, five-year man Jakob Poetl is the longest-tenured Spur.

The Spurs sign-and-trade deal for Demar DeRozan this offseason did net them veterans Thaddeus Young and Al-Farouq Aminu. Aminu was waived shortly after the completion of the deal. The Spurs were also able to land a future first-round pick, a second-round pick in 2022 as well as the Bulls’ 2025 second rounder. For a team marked by being old school, the Spurs have a good amount of draft capital with up-and-coming players like Derrick White, Keldon Johnson, Dejounte Murray, and Jakob Poetl.

That hasn’t lent itself to much success this season, however. The Spurs sit at 2-5, but they have played some good teams hard this season. Their two wins have come against the Magic and Bucks, both in comfortable fashion. Meanwhile, their losses have included hard-fought games against the Nuggets, Bucks, Lakers, Mavericks, and Pacers. For the most part this season, the Spurs have been a middling team. Where they do have holes is in giving up the 3rd highest eFG% on defense while struggling to get to the free-throw line on offense. But they also do a great job of limiting opponent free throws (2nd) as well as forcing Turnovers (6th), according to Cleaning the Glass.

Mavericks vs Spurs Injury Report

As of November 3rd, the injury report is as follows.

Mavericks:

Maxi Kleber (Out)

Trey Burke (GTD)

Kristaps Porzingis (GTD)

Spurs:

Zach Collins (Out)

Doug McDermott (GTD)

Mavericks vs. Spurs Betting Pick

This line does not seem to be accurately pricing Mavericks or how bad they may actually be. Their Expected Wins per 82 games this season, per Cleaning the Glass, is 22.4. The Spurs, on the other hand, have an expected win total of 37.3.

Furthermore, the Mavericks have lost both of their games this season in which they’ve had a rest disadvantage. As this season progresses, we’re going to see more flaws with this Mavericks team. Jason Kidd got outcoached by Erik Spoelstra last night and the Mavericks had no answer.

We’ll see tired legs from the Mavericks on the second night of a back-to-back here, and expect the Spurs, who are back home after a short road trip, to take care of business and cover this spread. In the previous meeting between these two teams in Dallas, the Spurs had a 25-5 lead at one point in the first quarter, but still lost the game. The Spurs will get off to another quick start tonight and Popovich should make the right adjustments based on what happened last week, holding the lead this time.

The Pick: Spurs +1

Source: Basketball Insider

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