Take Dallas Mavericks PK against LA Clippers risking 4 Units
Tonight's game between the the Clippers and Mavericks is a crucial
one for Dallas. As it stands right now, the Mavericks are currently
just two games behind the eighth-seeded Los Angeles Lakers in the Western
Conference and can no longer afford to simply play .500 basketball.
With the season drawing to an end, teams are being forced to play hard
in order to either advance their seeding for the playoffs or in Dallas'
case, simply get in.
Tonight would be considered nearly a "must win" for Dallas
especially with the Lakers losing at Golden State last night. Defense is going
to have to be the focus of the Mavericks tonight if they are going to
have a shot at beating the Clippers. Dallas is currently allowing 102.3
points per game on average, however the bright spot in that statistic
is that Dallas themselves are scoring an average of 104 points per game!
The Clippers have been a force to be reckoned with this season but over the last
month it appears that they are kind of just waiting for the playoffs
to begin. Clippers already have their post season ticket punched and
have no real way to up their current seeding so simply resting players,
avoiding injuries and just trying to come into the playoffs healthy
has been the mentality of the Clippers. And that has showed in some of their recent performances given the
fact they they are just barely over the .500 mark in the last month.
The Clippers' bench will also be tested tonight and will need to come
up big if LA wants to win this game. Chris Paul and Chauncey Billups
are game-time decisions due to recent injuries. CP3 will likely play
but won't be 100% and guard Eric Bledsoe will surely be watching his
minutes tonight due to a recent calf injury. He played 10 minutes against
Brooklyn Saturday night and totaled 7 points, 2 rebounds and only 1
assist. He will likely play limited minutes against Dallas to avoid
aggravating his calf.
If Dallas gets a lead in this game I would expect LA to pull back
a little bit and possibly accept the loss. It's also worth noting that
the Clippers have dropped their last 2 games on the road 107-92 to Denver
and 116-101 to Sacramento! The motivation and desire to win this game
obviously lies with the Mavericks. Dallas has so much more to gain from a win tonight than the Clippers
and with all the nagging injuries that the Clippers players are dealing
with, it wouldn't surprise me in the least to see LA rest some of the
starters or only allow them limited minutes. The Clippers could play
the role of spoiler tonight but I don't think that they will at the
risk of their players' health.
Some other trends worth considering:
- The Clippers are only 3-9 ATS in the last 12 meetings with Dallas.
Clippers are 1-4 ATS in the last 5 meetings when playing in Dallas.
Mavericks are 8-3 ATS in their last 11 games vs. a team with a winning
% above .600,
- The Mavericks are 18-6 ATS in their last 24 games vs. Western Conference
Mavericks are 25-10 ATS in their last 35 games.
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