NBA Western Conference Quarterfinals: #1 San Antonio Spurs vs #8 Dallas Mavericks
2014 NBA Playoffs
Western Conference Quarterfinals
#1 San Antonio Spurs vs #8 Dallas Mavericks
Best of Seven Series Format: 2-2-1-1-1
Series Price: Spurs -870 / Mavericks +585 (odds courtesy of 5Dimes Sportsbook)
Game #1, Sunday, April 20, 2014, 1:05 pm Eastern, TV: TNT
AT&T Center – San Antonio, Texas
Opening Line: San Antonio -9
Current Line: San Antonio -9 1/2
Opening Total: 206
Current Total: 205 1/2
Opening Money Line: Spurs -500 / Mavericks +390
Current Money Line: Spurs -530 / Mavericks +425
The 62-20 San Antonio Spurs are making their 17th straight playoff appearance, and 24th in the last 25 seasons. The remarkable run has included 4 NBA championships, and they came up just short of a fifth last season when the Spurs lost in seven games to the Miami Heat in the Finals. This year the Spurs had the league’s best record and won the Southwest Division by 8 games over the Houston Rockets.
San Antonio opens the playoffs against a familiar foe as they take on the 49-33 Dallas Mavericks in the Western Conference quarterfinals. The Mavericks were fourth in the Southwest, 13 games behind the Spurs. Dallas missed the playoffs last year for the first time since 2000. The winner of the Spurs and Mavericks will play the winner of the #4 Houston Rockets and #5 Portland Trail Blazers in the conference semifinals.
San Antonio has beaten Dallas 9 straight times, including back to back sweeps of the season series. The Spurs won in Dallas 116-107 December 26, in San Antonio 112-90 January 8, 112-106 March 2 also in San Antonio, and April 10 in Dallas 109-100. This is the fourth time since 2002 that the teams have met in the playoffs, but the first since 2010. Each team has 2 playoff series wins against the other.
Dallas is coached by Rick Carlisle. The Mavericks lost 2 of the last 3 games to end the season, including a 106-105 overtime loss at the Memphis Grizzlies Wednesday to close out the regular season. Dallas and Memphis were tied for the #7 spot going into that game. Dallas had won 6 straight road games before the Memphis loss. The Mavericks are 44-38 ATS and the total is 45-37 this season.
Dallas is outscoring teams 105-102 this season. The Mavericks are #8 in scoring and #20 in points allowed. Dallas is shooting 47.4% from the field and 38.4% from 3 point range. The Mavericks are #4 in field goal shooting and #2 in 3 point shooting. Dallas is #3 in free throw shooting at 79.5% from the line. Opponents are shooting 46.4% from the field and 35.9% from 3 point range. Dallas averages 40.9 rebounds per game and opponents average 42.8 per game. The Mavericks are #26 in rebounds. Dallas averages 23.6 assists, 13.5 turnovers, 8.6 steals and 4.4 blocks per game. Opponents average 22 assists, 16 turnovers, 7.8 steals and 3.5 blocks per game.
Forward Dirk Nowitzki averages 21.7 points, 6.2 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game. The first-ballot Hall-of-Famer passed Oscar Robertson to become the 10th leading scorer in NBA history recently. nowitzki is probable with a knee injury. Guard Monta Ellis averages 19 points, 3.6 rebounds, 5.7 assists, and 1.7 steals per game. Guard Vince Carter averages 11.9 points, 3.5 rebounds and 2.6 assists per game. Guard Jose Calderon averages 11.4 points, 2.4 rebounds and 4.7 assists per game. Forward Shawn Marion averages 10.4 points, 6.5 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 1.2 steals per game. Brandan Wright, Devin Harris, Samuel Dalembert, DeJuan Blair and Jae Crowder will also get significant minutes.
San Antonio is coached by Gregg Popovich. The Spurs have gone 4-3 in their last 7 games after a 19 game winning streak. San Antonio lost 2 straight games to close out the regular season including 113-100 at home to the Los Angeles Lakers Wednesday. The Sours rested their starters in the last two games because they had already clinched the #1 seed and home court. San Antonio is 45-37 ATS and the total is 44-37-1 this season.
San Antonio is outscoring teams 105-97. The Spurs are #6 in scoring and #6 in points allowed. San Antonio is shooting 48.6% from the field and 39.7% from 3 point range. The Spurs are #2 in field goal percentage and #1 in 3 point shooting. San Antonio is #4 in free throw shooting at 78.5% from the line. Opponents are shooting 44.4% from the field and 35.3% from 3 point range. The Spurs are in the top 10 in both categories. San Antonio is averaging 43.3 rebounds per game and opponents average 42.2 per game. The Spurs average 25.2 assists, 14.6 turnovers, 7.5 steals and 5.2 blocks per game. Opponents average 20.3 assists, 14 turnovers, 7.8 steals and 4.7 blocks per game.
Point guard Tony Parker averages 16.7 points, 5.7 assists, and 2.3 rebounds per game. Forward Tim Duncan averages 15.1 points, 9.7 rebounds, 3 assists, and 1.9 blocks per game. Forward Kawhi Leonard averages 12.8 points, 6.2 rebounds, 2 assists, and 1.7 steals per game. Guard Manu Ginobli averages 12.3 points, 3 rebounds, 4.3 assists, and 1 steal per game. Guard Marco Belinelli averages 11.4 assists, 2.8 rebounds and 2.2 assists per game. Guard Patty Mills averages 10.2 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.8 assists. Boris Diaw, Danny Green, Tiago Splitter, Cory Joseph, Jeff Ayres, and Matt Bonner will also get significant minutes.
Dallas is 5-1 ATS on 3 or more days rest, 4-1 when the opponent scores 100 points or more in the previous game and against Southwest Division teams, 7-2-1 in conference quarterfinal games, 39-14 after a straight up loss, and against teams with winning home records, 5-2 in Sunday games, 47-19 in road games, and 1-5 after a cover. The road team is 6-1 ATS in the last 7 games in this series. The under is 8-3 ATS in the last 11 games in San Antonio between the teams.
San Antonio is 5-0 ATS against teams with winning road records, 4-0 in conference quarterfinal games, 8-1 after a double digit home loss, 6-1 after failing to cover, 8-2 at home, 9-3 against teams with winning records, 15-5 overall, 11-4 when the opponent scores 100 points or more in the previous game, 16-6 after scoring 100 points or more, 12-5 against Western Conference teams, 18-8 after a straight up loss, 35-17-2 after a straight up loss of 10 points or more, and 41-20-1 after allowing 100 points or more in the previous game. The Spurs are 15-5-1 ATS against the Mavericks recently including 5-2 in San Antonio.
Duncan and Nowitzki are two of the greatest players in history, and we won’t get a chance to see them compete against each other for very much longer. San Antonio has dominated their I-35 rivals recently. The streak has to end sometime, and I think Dallas makes this series. The Spurs win game #1 at home, but Dallas takes the series to 7 games before bowing out.