The Brooklyn Nets and Dallas Mavericks go toe-to-toe on Thursday night at the American Airlines Center in Dallas. The regular season is winding down, with only a week and some change left in the regular season. The schedule will draw to a close on May 16 with a full slate. There isn’t a whole lot of time left for teams to make their move to get into the postseason, the play-in tournament, or playing to avoid the four-game play-in.
Lebron James thinks the play-in tournament is dumb, and while I don’t care for it either, I understand why the NBA is doing it to make some of their lost profit back from having no fans in attendance. The Mavericks are playing to get into the playoffs and avoid that tournament. They welcome the Nets to Dallas with a record of 37-28 and fifth in the Western Conference.
That would be enough to get into the playoffs without having to go to the play-in, but they’re only 1.5 games ahead of the seventh placed Portland Trail Blazers. No. 10 to 7 go to the play-in, which could involve the Los Angeles Lakers of all teams, so the Mavericks are not out of the woods just yet. They have to finish strong and if they’re not interested in going to the play-in tournament. The Mavericks sure looked good on Tuesday in a 127-113 win over the Miami Heat.
Albeit, Jimmy Butler was a late scratch, and the Heat didn’t have Tyler Herro either. The Heat are not anything close to a full unit without Butler in the lineup. In any case, the Mavericks were able to take advantage of the big hole on their roster and exploited the wounded Heat. The Mavericks have been playing solid basketball as of late with wins in four of their previous five outings. They had a bad 111-99 loss against the Sacramento Kings, but bounced back with the win over Miami.
Brooklyn is looking for a response after three straight losses going into Texas. They were looking good with four straight wins, and then the Nets suffered three straight losses. It includes two losses against a good Bucks team, 117-114 and 124-118. James Harden remains out tonight, as he continues to nurse a hamstring injury. The Nets are hopeful about a return in the postseason, but there are no guarantees. Head below for our free Nets vs. Mavericks pick on May 6, 2021.
Brooklyn Nets vs. Dallas Mavericks NBA Betting Odds:
Nets vs. Mavericks Prediction:
Prior to the two losses against the Bucks, the Nets struggled in a 128-108 loss against the Trail Blazers. That was just a no effort performance from the Nets. They were coming off a game against the Indiana Pacers the night before, a 130-113 win, and did not look interested in welcoming the Trail Blazers to Brooklyn. The effort was there against the Bucks, but they failed against a team that was better on those nights. In any event, the Nets are still a dangerous team that can go off without James Harden in the lineup. Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant are both expected to play this evening against the Mavericks.
Brooklyn is second in the league with 118.7 points scored per game. They’re shooting 49.2% from the field to lead the NBA in field goal percentage. There is nothing that the Nets do bad offensively, and they’ve proven to be dangerous on the road as well. The Nets have recorded an average of 119.6 points per game on the road this season. Their efficiency on offense has even improved slightly as a visiting team. However, the Nets did go cold against the Mavericks in their most recent meeting.
The Nets scored just 98 points in a 115-98 loss versus the Mavericks at home. Keep in mind that this was without Irving and Durant on the floor, though. The Mavericks are likely going to need all of the offensive firepower they can get tonight. They’re going to be undermanned without Kristaps Porzingis in the lineup. Porzingis is not going to be playing for the third consecutive game and the sixth in the Mavs’ last seven contests.
Credit the Mavs, though, as they’re winners in seven of their previous nine outings and the offense has turned it up. Dallas has been inconsistent offensively this season, as they go and fall depending on Luka Doncic. However, they’ve been hot recently and should be able to play well against a beatable Brooklyn defense. The Mavericks have scored 119.8 points per game in their last five outings, as Doncic doesn’t seem to mind when Porzingis is out of the lineup. The Nets have conceded 117 points per game in their previous five. I’m interested in the OVER in what should be an entertaining game in Dallas tonight. I think the total is a few points too short.