The 29-24 Mavericks travel to the FedEx Forum on Wednesday night to take on the 27-25 Grizzlies. Dallas has lost two games in a row, including a 113-95 loss at home to the 76ers on Monday night. Memphis picked up a 101-90 win at home on Monday night against the Bulls to maintain their position in the eighth spot of the Western Conference standings. These two teams met in Dallas back on Feb 22, when the Mavericks picked up a 102-92 victory behind a 29-point outburst from Tim Hardaway Jr.
Dallas is led by the preseason MVP favorite Luka Doncic, who is averaging 28.6 points, eight rebounds and 8.6 assists per game this season. Doncic was held to only 21 points in the first matchup, making only three of his 10 three-point attempts. The reason for the Mavericks success over the past month has been in large part due to big man Kristaps Porzingis.
Kristaps Porzingis is getting healthy and playing at his peak. Porzingis sat out Monday night to rest, but on Sunday he scored 31 points and hauled in 15 rebounds on 12-of-21 shooting from the floor.
Memphis is led by sophomore sensation Ja Morant, who leads the team with 18.9 points and 7.4 assists per game. Morant has not been great this month, however. In fact, he has gone three of his last five games without making a single three-point attempt. The Grizzlies will need Morant to get back to his early form if they hope to get past the play-in tournament.
Center Jonas Valanciunas has stepped up this month, scoring 26 points and tallying 14 rebounds on Monday night to lead the team to victory over Chicago. Valanciunas should be able to have his way down low if the Mavericks choose to place Porzingis on him, making the Over on his player prop for points worth a look.
|Teams||Spread||Money Line||Total Points|
|Dallas Mavericks||-3 (-115)||+140||O 225½ (-110)|
|Memphis Grizzlies||+3 (-105)||+125||U 225½ (-110)|
This game is difficult to handicap based on the spread because of the success of both teams in past similar situations.
The first game totaled at 194 points because these two teams are relatively even and both teams know the importance of defeating each other in the sense that they would move up in the standings. In a game of this importance, the pace seems to slow down and every possession seems to become a little more valuable.
Thus, the best bet for Wednesday night is to take the Under and watch both teams play their tails off in a game that should total out around 210.