Dancin’ Dallas: Dirk and the Mavs Seek to Tune Up Against Joe Johnson’s Atlanta Hawks — Betting Preview and Betting TrendsDallas Mavericks vs Atlanta Hawks
Tip off: 8 PM EST
Spread: ATL -5
M/L: ATL -210, DAL +180
Prior to the season, Vegas oddsmakers had set the Mavericks chances at a title at 3.5:1. Turns out, even those odds were a poor value for bettors. The Mavericks have been remarkably average and will finish with the 7th seed this year. That means a likely death sentence against Russell Westbrook, James Harden, Kevin Durant, and the rest of the Oklahoma City Thunders’ stacked team. It’s hardly something that could be considered a success in light of the fact Dallas was our champions just a year ago.
It’s hard to blame Dirk Nowitzki. He has been his usual brilliant self. More than anything, it has become painfully clear that the loss of Tyson Chandler destroyed a strong defensive team. Moreover, Vince Carter and Lamar Odom were both huge disappointments, especially Odom. Odom failed to produce anything of value in his entire tenure as a Maverick and Nowitzki was so disgusted he refused even commenting on the disgruntled veteran, “I have nothing to say about him.”
Atlanta has done an amazing job of weathering the storm without Al Horford who should be back for the playoffs. Horford suffered a pectoral strain earlier in the season and has been rehabbing it extensively. His interior presence keeps defenders honest, and his rebounding is essential. It may only be fantasy basketball players that appreciate how truly good Horford is, because at this point he is basically a far better version of Horace Grant, and that is saying something.
The Hawks, thankfully or not, still have three more seasons left after this of Joe Johnson. Hopefully, Josh Smith will stick around, but he is a free agent at season’s end, and the Brooklyn Nets will likely come calling, trying to create a super trio of Deron Williams, Smith, and Magic three time Defensive Player of the Year Dwight Howard. Look for the hip hop appeal and new arena in Brooklyn to lure some top names, as players like the idea of playing for rap mogul Jay-Z.
Tonight is an important game for both teams if only for momentum. The Hawks could still sneak by the 4th seeded Celtics, but would then draw the Chicago Bulls. Still, a first round win would go a long way towards pleasing the Hawks’ fans…all 6,000 of them.
Atlanta Betting Trends:
The Hawks are 34-29 ATS this season and 20-17 ATS as a favorite. They are 16-16 ATS at home and 6-1 ATS after playing three consecutive game at home. They are 6-4 ATS vs teams with winning records in the second half of the season.
Dallas Betting Trends:
The Mavs are 31-33 AT this season and 12-9 ATS as an underdog. They are 15-17 ATS on the road and 17-25 ATS in the second half of the season. They are 17-15 ATS vs teams with winning record and 1-4 ATS vs Southeast Division opponents. They are 8-7 ATS vs teams with winning records in the second half of the season.