Raptors Continue To Struggle; Dallas Caps Longtime Miami Rivalry

Wednesday, February 13, 2019 3:05 PM UTC

Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019 3:05 PM UTC

The Wizards are looking to go for a season ATS sweep of the Raptors, while Dallas hopes to continue their ATS dominance at home.

Washington (24-33 SU, 25-32 ATS) at Toronto (42-16 SU, 25-32-1 ATS)Wednesday 7:30 p.m. ETFree NBA PIck: Wizards ATSBest LIne Offered: Just Bet

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The Raptors are very hot right now and Toronto is the second-best team in the Eastern Conference with a 42-16 record, and they have won five straight coming into this game. Kawhi Leonard is leading the way in points (27.0) and steals (1.9) per game. Besides containing Leonard, the Wizards need to guard Kyle Lowry who is averaging a team-high of 9.1 assists per game this season and shooting 47.1 percent from deep over the Raptors’ five-game win streak.

Toronto will be going for the season sweep of the Wizards although two of the previous games were extremely close and Washington was able to cover the spread in all three contests so far against the Raptors.

Both teams played Monday night. The injury-depleted Wizards lost 121-112 to the Pistons in Detroit, while the Raptors eked out a 127-125 home victory over the Brooklyn Nets.

The Wizards (24-33) have been without John Wall who was already out for the season with heel surgery before tearing his left Achilles tendon last week. Against the Pistons, they also were without Tomas Satoransky, for personal reasons, which meant they were without their two best point guards.

That left Chasson Randle making his first NBA start against the Pistons, with backup help from Jordan McRae, the top scorer in the G League (30 points per game).

Jeremy Lin is no longer with the Atlanta Hawks after completing a buyout with the team on Monday and announced that he would be joining the Raptors. The point guard is averaging 10.7 points and 3.5 assists per game, numbers comparable to what Fred Van Vleet posted before injuring his thumb earlier this week. With VanVleet injured and Delon Wright in Memphis after the Marc Gasol trade, it wouldn’t be surprising if Lin gets minutes right away.

The Raptors have struggled covering all season as their straight up winning record (42-16) does not reflect they ATS record (25-32-1). The Wizards opened as 10.5 point underdogs against the Raptors and that is entirely too many points for Toronto to overcome.

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📍 Toronto#WizRaptors | #DCFamily pic.twitter.com/8fSEwG5T61

— Washington Wizards (@WashWizards) February 12, 2019
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Miami (25-30 SU, 28-27 ATS) at Dallas (26-30 SU, 35-21 ATS)Wednesday 8:30 p.m. ETFree NBA Pick: Mavericks ATSBest Line Offered: Bovada

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As the Dallas Mavericks welcome the struggling MIami Heat to town Wednesday night, the final game for both teams before the All-Star break, it's a story of the new guard replacing the old guard.

Even though Dallas sports a sub-.500 record, has won only six road games and is essentially on life-support as far as grabbing a Western Conference playoff spot, perhaps no team sitting outside the playoff bubble enters All-Star weekend with more optimism.

That optimism can be summed up in two words: Luka Doncic.

The 19-year-old rookie has created optimism that Dallas might soon return to contender status. Dallas believes so highly in its young Slovenian star that it traded away its entire starting lineup to land 7-foot-3 Kristaps Porzingis who won't even play this season as he continues to recover from a torn ACL and to clear out salary-cap space to make a run at key free agents to build around Doncic.

Against the Heat, Doncic will share the floor with two players who will suit up Sunday as All-Stars one final time as honorary team members -- his Mavs teammate Dirk Nowitzki and Dallas nemesis and Heat star Dwyane Wade. While Nowitzki is receiving emotional sendoffs at every road arena he plays, even though he has not declared his 21st season in Dallas to be his last at age 40, Wade announced that he will retire at season's end.

Dallas fans grew to loathe Wade after his free-throw parade led Miami back from a 2-0 deficit to win the 2006 NBA Finals over Nowitzki and the Mavs. In 2011, Nowitzki and Dallas got revenge by taking down Wade and LeBron James in the first of their four finals appearances together. The Miami and Dallas rivalry will take shape one last time with the original main stars and with Dallas’ 20-8 ATS record at home this season, look for them to close out this chapter with a big cover on Wednesday night.

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