Mavericks vs Rockets 2020 NBA Odds, Preview & Prediction

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What looked like a great matchup between a future NBA MVP in Dallas’ Luka Doncic and a former one in Houston’s James Harden has lost its luster as Doncic was injured Thursday and will miss at least Friday’s game in Houston. The Mybookie NBA spread for Mavericks vs Rockets is going to change dramatically with Doncic out.

Mavericks vs Rockets 2020 NBA Odds, Preview & Prediction

Mavericks vs Rockets Season Series

Dallas leads 1-0, winning 137-123 in Houston on Nov. 24. Luka Doncic had a game-high 41 points to go along with a team-high 10 assists, six rebounds and two steals. Doncic is now averaging 24.4 points, 8.8 rebounds, 6.0 assists and 1.6 steals per game in five career games against the Rockets. Tim Hardaway Jr. added 31 points. The Mavericks scored 45 points in the first quarter and were up 78-60 at halftime.

James Harden had 32 points for Houston but was just 2 of 15 on 3-pointers in a game where the Rockets made 10 of 44 3-point attempts. Clint Capela had 21 points and 22 rebounds. Houston had taken 16 of the previous 21 matchups before that loss. The Rockets had also taken six of the previous seven and 10 of the previous 13 meetings in Houston. The Mavericks have not won a season series with the Rockets since 2012-13, when they went 3-1.

Why Bet on Dallas?

The Mavericks have been a huge surprise this season but laid a big egg Tuesday in a 133-104 loss at home to Phoenix. Devin Booker scored 20 of his 32 points in a decisive third quarter, and Deandre Ayton had a season-high 31 points and the Suns never trailed.

The Suns outscored the Mavericks 48-22 in the third. It was the most points in a quarter for Phoenix since 1990, and the most the Mavericks have given up in any quarter in franchise history. The Mavericks have struggled at home this season and are 13-12 in their arena.

Mavs star Luka Doncic, an All-Star starter, scored 21 points with six rebounds and just two assists before leaving the game for good with the Mavericks trailing by 36 with 8:05 remaining. He was the only starter in double figures for Dallas, which was just 7 of 33 from 3-point range. Kristaps Porzingis played the second night of a back-to-back for the first time since returning from a 10-game absence with a sore right knee. He had nine points and three rebounds in 20 minutes.

Doncic turned his right ankle at Thursday’s practice and will not play Friday, which will obviously change that opening spread. It’s the same ankle that he sprained earlier this season and caused him to miss four games. Doncic is averaging team highs of 28.8 points, 8.7 assists and 9.5 rebounds per game this season. Among NBA leaders, he ranks fifth in scoring, fourth in assists and 16th in rebounding.

Tough Loss

Doncic will get an MRI Friday but it’s thought he will miss multiple games and maybe sit until the All-Star break. Doncic didn’t even travel to Houston. In addition, starting guard Tim Hardaway Jr. (lower back tightness) is questionable for Friday’s game.Rick Carlisle, who is in his 12th season as the head coach of the Mavericks, holds an all-time record of 499-434 (.535) with the franchise.

He needs just one win to become the 13th different head coach in NBA history to win at least 500 games with a single team, joining Gregg Popovich (San Antonio), Jerry Sloan (Utah), Red Auerbach (Boston), Red Holzman (New York), Phil Jackson (Chicago & the L.A. Lakers), John MacLeod (Phoenix), Alvin Attles (Golden State), Erik Spoelstra (Miami), Don Nelson (Milwaukee), Pat Riley (L.A. Lakers) Gene Shue (Washington) and Rudy Tomjanovich (Houston).

Team Stats

Offense

  • Total Score: 116.13
  • Field Goal Percentage: 46.13
  • Three-Point Percentage: 36.29
  • Free Throw Percentage: 76.64
  • Total Rebounds: 47.28

Defense

  • Total Score: 110.00
  • Field Goal Percentage: 45.20
  • Three-Point Percentage: 34.29
  • Free Throw Percentage: 77.18
  • Total Rebounds: 45.28

Why Bet on Houston?

Houston was a 125-112 loser in Portland on Wednesday. Damian Lillard had 36 points, 11 assists and 10 rebounds in his first career triple-double. Portland led by as many as 20 points in the second half. It was the last of four road games in six nights for the Rockets.

James Harden (bruised left thigh) scored 18 points on 5-of-18 shooting during Wednesday’s loss, adding five rebounds, four assists, two steals, two blocks and two 3-pointers. Harden missed two games with the injury. Wednesday was just the fifth time this season Harden had fewer than 20 points. Harden has scored below 20 points in three of his past six games played after doing so twice over his first 38 games played. He is averaging 39.2 points on 47.0% shooting (40.7% 3FGs) in wins this season compared to 29.5 ppg on 37.0% shooting (25.0% 3FGs) in losses.

Eric Gordon scored eight points on Wednesday with two assists, two steals and one block in 30 minutes. Gordon was coming off a massive 50-point effort on Monday in Utah when the Rockets were without Harden and Russell Westbrook (rest).

Mavericks vs Rockets should be an easy one for Houston with Doncic out.

Key Players

Westbrook led the Rockets with 39 points on Wednesday, extending his streak of games with 20-plus points to 21, and 10 rebounds. Westbrook has scored 30+ points in eight of his past nine games played and is averaging 34.0 ppg on 53.9% shooting over that span but the Rockets are 3-6 in those games.

Clint Capela (bruised right heel) was quiet during his return on Wednesday, scoring two points with seven rebounds and one assist in 17 minutes. Capela’s heel has nagged him since at least Dec. 22 and he missed a few games of late. Capela is averaging 15.4 points and 2.5 blocks in wins compared to 12.0 ppg and 1.1 bpg in losses.

Team Stats

Offense

  • Total Score: 118.51
  • Field Goal Percentage: 45.40
  • Three-Point Percentage: 34.68
  • Free Throw Percentage: 77.94
  • Total Rebounds: 46.64

Defense

  • Total Score: 114.55
  • Field Goal Percentage: 45.90
  • Three-Point Percentage: 34.55
  • Free Throw Percentage: 75.93
  • Total Rebounds: 46.34

Mavericks vs Rockets 2020 NBA Betting Trends

  • Rockets are 3-6 SU in their last 9 gamesRockets are 3-6 ATS in their last 9 games this season
  • Rockets are 3-6 ATS in their last 9 games this season
  • The total has gone UNDER in 10 of Houston’s last 14 games against Dallas
  • Mavericks are 4-1 SU in their last 5 games on the road
  • Mavericks are 8-1 ATS in their last 9 games against an opponent in the Southwest division
  • The total has gone OVER in 5 of Dallas’ last 5 games played on a Friday

Expert Prediction

Dallas Mavericks 110 – Houston Rockets 120

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