New York Knicks @ Dallas Mavericks -3.5
New York has had a day off to recoup from their stinging overtime loss to Boston on ABC Sunday afternoon. The Knicks had the game well in hand, but a contested Paul Pierce 3-pointer with 11 seconds to play and a buzzer-beating attempts clanking off the rim for Carmelo Anthony, and the next thing you know Rajon Rondo was controlling overtime en route to an improbable and standings-important win for the C’s.
Much of the trouble for New York stemmed from their sloppy ball handling by their point guards. Jeremy Lin and his amazing Hollywood-story and Baron Davis, who might wind up actually producing the thing if and when it does hit Hollywood, combined for a staggering twelve turnovers. Tonight, they bring their made-for-television act to Dallas where the defense has been stingy all season long. Tyson Chandler may now be plying his trade for the opponent, but the Mavs have still held their opponents under 90 points per game so far this season, and have been especially stingy in their own gym. However, Dallas has one important factor going against them; they are an old team playing on the back end of a back-to-back tonight.
Dallas has been a solid 14-7 at home this season, while the Knicks have gone just 7-10 on the road. Yes, the team has improved greatly with the insertion of Jeremy Lin into the lineup, but they have still taken their share of losses; some of them downright ugly (New Jersey, New Orleans). Dallas has been a little difficult to figure this season, as they have been extremely streaky. Just when it seemed like the defending champs were rounding into form, they went on a five game losing skid that encompassed both sides of the All-Star break. Things are once again stabilizing, fresh off a solid win over Utah to balance out the terrible loss to New Orleans (who coincidentally has also beaten the Knicks). However, the Mavericks don’t matchup position-wise with the new look New York Knicks, despite their success in this matchup in the past.
Dallas has won 17 of the last 20 meetings with the Knicks, and has won by an average of 12.5 points per contest. Granted, much of that came against an entirely different Knicks roster, but the dominant trend is worth noting. However, more imposing on tonight’s selection is the fact that Dallas is just 1-7 ATS in their last eight games and is playing the second night of a back-to-back.
New York is 12-5 in their last 17 games ATS and the road team is 8-3 ATS in this series. I like the Knicks to play well tonight and take advantage of a slightly tired and relatively listless Maverick squad tonight in Dallas.
Free Pick: New York Knicks +3.5 <– Click for $500 betting bonus