Dallas Mavericks at Boston Celtics – NBA March 31

Dallas (24-21, 13-11 road) at Boston (23-24, 13-8 home)

  • Time: 4:30 PST – 6:30 CST – 7:30 EST
  • Place: TD Garden, Boston, MA
  • TV: ESPN, Bally Sports Southwest, NBC Sports Boston

Opening Tip:

Dallas snapped a two-game losing streak with it’s 127-106 win over Oklahoma City on Monday. The Mavericks are on the third game of a five-game road trip as they are continuing to try to solidify their standing in the Western Conference where they currently sit as the 7-seed.

The Celtics are trying to get everyone healthy and stay above water as they are currently tied for sixth in the Eastern Conference with the Hawks and Heat as six teams are within a 2.5 games range of fourth place.

Boston is 4-6 over it’s last 10 games after dropping a 115-109 decision in New Orleans on Monday. The Mavericks are 5-5 over their last 10 games with roads wins at Denver and Portland.

The Mavericks took a 110-107 win over the Celtics in Dallas on Feb. 23 as Luke Dončić had two late game go-ahead three-pointers as he netted the go-ahead triple with 0.1 seconds remaining.

Key Injuries:

  • MavericksWillie Cauley-Stein – (healthy and safety protocols) – OUT – J.J. Reddick – (heel) – OUT
  • Celtics Jaylen Brown – (hip) – Questionable – Romeo Langford – (healthy ad safety protocols) – Questionable – Semi Ojeleye – (side) – OUT – Tristan Thompson – (health and safety protocols) – OUT

Vs. The Spread:


  • The UNDER has been the play in 12 of the Mavs’ last 17 games
  • The Mavericks are 3-6 ATS in their last 9 games vs. Boston
  • Dallas is 4-2 ATS in it’s last 6 games on the road


  • Boston is 4-2 ATS in it’s last 6 games
  • The UNDER has been the Total in 6 of the last 9 Celtics-Mavericks matchups
  • The C’s are 4-1 SU in their last 5 home games vs. the Mavericks

Last Time Out:

Luka Dončić scored 25 points after missing the previous two games as he led the Mavericks to a 127-106 win over Oklahoma City. Kristaps Porzingus scored 20 points and nine rebounds was back as well as he had also missed the previous game. The Mavericks shot 53.1 percent from the floor and assisted 30 of 51 makes.

Boston scored 13 consecutive points to cut a 16-point lead to three as a late Jayson Tatum layup rimmed out and New Orleans preserved a 115-109 win over the Celtics from the free throw line. Tatum had 34 points and nine boards for the Celtics whose two-game winning streak ended.

Teams Spread Money Line Total Points
Dallas Mavericks +1 (-113) -105 O 222½ (-110)
Boston Celtics -1 (-107) -115 U 222½ (-110)

Advantage, Dallas:

Dallas Mavericks LogoLuka Dončić is at the hub of a Mavericks’ three-point game that averages 13.6 makes (9th/NBA) while they shoot 35.9 percent (19th/NBA). Tim Hardaway, Jr. (39.7%-3) complements Dončić well on the perimeter as he leads the team in makes with 133. The Celtics three-point defense is very navigatable as they give up 37.1 percent (19th/NBA) and their last four opponents have made 41.6 percent of their triples.

Key Mavericks Stat:

Dončić is shooting 55.6 percent from inside the arc and has made good one 75 percent of his 290 free throw attempts. Boston’s defense lets down inside for stretches so look for Dallas to go right to the paint either off the dribble or on post-ups by Kristaps Porzingus (55.4%-2).


Josh Richardson (12.8 ppg, 3.5 rpg) has been a solid contributor as a role player as he has started all 36 games that he has appeared in. He averaged career highs two years ago in Miami, but had more of a role as a scorer. Here, he is a complementary piece and will be a key in Dallas getting into the playoffs and maybe staying around to win a series.

Advantage, Boston:

Boston Celtics LogoThe Celtics need everyone to get healthy and stay healthy and they need Jayson Tatum to continue the torrid pace that he has been at over the last month. Tatum is averaging 31.7 points and 6.7 rebounds over his last three games. Jaylen Brown is averaging 25.6 points and 6.3 boards over his last five. The playmaking of Marcus Smart and Kemba Walker continue to be solid as Smart is at about a 3.1-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio and Walker checks in at around

A 2.2-to-1 assist-to-turnover margin

Key Celtics Stat:

The Celtics limit two point field goals but lots of that has to do with the fact that opponents look to attack their perimeter defense first. Not only to Tatum and Brown are one-two in scoring, they also lead the Boston defense with 54 and 51 steals, respectively.


The C’s are looking to get new acquisition Evan Fournier indoctrinated into the flow and into their system. He went 0-for-10 in his debut against the Pelicans on Monday after averaging 19.7 points and 3.9 assists this season in Orlando.

Winner: Celtics (-1) 115, Mavericks 111

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Celtics (-1)
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Kenneth Cross / Author

Kenneth Cross is a new entry to The Sports Geek staff as he has 25 years of experience in print, broadcast, and internet sports journalism. Cross is a lover of all sports, but college basketball is his passion. He estimates that he has seen around 1,500 college basketball games - live and in-person - and hopes that grows this season. If you listen to Radio, you have likely heard him on Sundays covering the Carolina Panthers for some 20 years. Now in Tampa Bay, he works as a national radio correspondent.