On the heels of a home upset over the 76ers on Thursday night and the closing out of a winning homestand against the Cavaliers on Friday, Portland opens an important three-game road trip in Dallas on Sunday night. The NBA is looking to dive into the void created by the end of the football season, and Blazers at Mavericks picks and predictions seek to isolate a winner in this Western Conference clash between teams that haven’t performed to expectations thus far but have demonstrated improvement over the past week.
Portland Trail Blazers Vs. Dallas Mavericks Odds
|BetMGM Sportsbook||Point Spread||Moneyline||Totals|
|Portland Trail Blazers||+5.5 (-115)||+170||O 235.5 (-110)|
|Dallas Mavericks||-5.5 (-105)||-200||U 235.5 (-110)|
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- Game Time & Arena: 7:35 p.m. ET at AmericanAirlines Center
Mavericks Current Form And Betting Results
The Mavericks were saddled with depth issues for weeks due to starting guard Josh Richardson and key forwards Dorian Finney-Smith, Maxi Kleber, and Dwight Powell all being sidelined due to COVID-19. Kristaps Porzingis didn’t debut until Jan. 13 as he returned from an ACL tear, so Sunday’s encounter with the Blazers will be just his 17th game of the season.
Dallas has been a .500 team with him and slightly worse without him, but it took a three-game win streak into Friday night’s clash against New Orleans and was looking to match a season-best run of prosperity.
Luka Doncic has put up MVP-type numbers despite them not leading to as many wins as he’d like, but 27.8 points, 8.7 rebounds, and 9.3 assists put him in elite company. He’s shot just 30.9 percent from 3-point range and has made just three of his last 14 attempts from beyond the arc. Outside of a 7-for-12 effort against Golden State last Saturday (Feb. 6), he’s 8-for-30 on 3-pointers this month.
Blazers at Mavericks picks have to factor in the pace at which Dallas games have been played of late, delivering on the high side in 10 of 13 entering Friday’s home date with the Pelicans, including five in succession to the ‘over.’ The ‘under’ has only prevailed by a point or two all three times, so fade Dallas’ ability to score and defend poorly at your peril given its recent run.
Blazers Current Form And Betting Results
The Trail Blazers have been without guard C.J. McCollum since Jan. 16, when a foot fracture took him out of the equation. He’ll have his walking boot removed next week and could be back before February ends, but his team has managed to find their footing without his 26.7 points and 5.0 assists per game.
While McCollum was having a season worthy of his first All-Star nod before being injured, star Damian Lillard picked up the slack by scoring 36 points in the 112-106 win over Atlanta in which McCollum was sidelined and has scored at least 29 points in all but two of 11 games entering Friday’s date with the Cavaliers, averaging over 32 per contest.
Gary Trent Jr. has moved into the starting lineup and has scored in double-figures in all but two contests, averaging nearly 20 points per game and firing in four or more 3-pointers in the majority of his starts.
Blazers at Mavericks picks and predictions should take into account that Portland is 4-2 in February and has covered six of eight, dating back to a Jan. 28 road game at Houston to open its last lengthy trip. The Blazers went 3-3 out of a suitcase from Jan. 28-Feb. 6 and have seen the ‘over’ go 7-5 in games outside the Moda Center.
Betting Line Analysis
The Mavs opened as 2-point favorites against the Pels and were bet up to a 2.5-point ‘chalk.’ The total was set at 233.5, which is slightly higher than where it was placed for Dallas’ previous five games, which topped out in the 228-to-232.5 range at BetMGM.
Portland saw a total of 222 set for its Friday night date with Cleveland, and the highest number it has seen this season was 241.5 at Washington on Feb. 2 in a game that ended in a 132-121 Blazers win.
This sports betting total shouldn’t be that high but will likely wind up in the 233-235 range. Look for Blazers at Mavericks odds to have Dallas favored by at least 2.5 points at home.
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Injuries/Rotational Adjustments To Watch
McCollum and center Jusuf Nurkic won’t be back for weeks, so Trent and Enes Kanter will remain in the starting lineup. Expect to see Robert Covington on Kristaps Porzingis and plenty of Derrick Jones, Jr. on Luka Doncic since Terry Stotts figures to utilize his most athletic forwards against Dallas’ playmakers.
Keeping Kanter off the offensive glass will be a focal point for the Mavericks. Lillard scored 61 points in the bubble in the most recent matchup between these teams back on Aug. 11, hitting all 18 of his free-throw attempts and finishing 9-for-17 from 3-point range in a 134-131 win. The teams combined for 69 or more points in three of the four quarters, playing out the fourth to a 36-36 stalemate.
Porzingis scored 36 points on 12-for-17 shooting, so the addition of Covington to pester him despite giving up over six inches in height should be an x-factor. If he’s ineffective, Dallas offense should flourish. Doncic shot just 2-for-8 from 3-point range in that loss in Orlando, but wound up with 25 points, eight rebounds, 10 assists, and six turnovers.
Mavericks/Blazers Handicapping Notes And Pick
Carmelo Anthony is enjoying his best stretch of the 2020-21 season, which could make the difference in Portland’s upset bid. After scoring over 20 points once in his first 17 games, Anthony managed to do it four times in February’s first six contests. His season-high 24 points helped produce Thursday’s 118-114 upset of the 76ers. In Portland’s first four wins in February, Anthony averaged 22.5 points and shot 13-for-23 from 3-point range. In the Blazers’ two losses, he shot 2-for-15 from the field and missed both attempts from beyond the arc.
The Mavs split against Portland in last season’s two meetings in Dallas, losing 121-119 in October of ’19 while posting a 120-112 win in January just under 13 months ago. Doncic averaged 32 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists in those games and there’s no reason to expect him to be slowed down here. Look to ride the over on points-rebounds-assists props and go with the high side on the total, doing your best to get the lowest number possible before Blazers at Mavericks odds are bet up.