NBA Picks: Back Tempting 'Over' Odds as Mavericks Visit Raptors

Jordan Sharp

Tuesday, December 22, 2015 3:27 PM GMT

In what should by far be the best inter-conference game on the schedule tonight, the Raptors and Mavs hook up north of the border. The NBA Odds have the Raptors as -4 favorites at home.

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NBA Pick: OVER 195
Best Line Offered: at Bovada

 

Finding The Value
In what should be one of the more competitive games of the evening, it can be hard to find value ATS at times. Smaller spreads against two worthy opponents can create unwanted volatility at times. Even though the Raptors are still dealing with injuries to their two best defenders in Jonas Valanciunas and DeMarre Carroll, they still present a big challenge to the Mavs. For one, Kyle Lowry will be back after getting thrown out of the Raptors game on Sunday, and you can bet he will want to dominate this game against Deron Williams and the other sub par point guard defenders for the Mavs. This might make up some of the loss from not having Carroll in the lineup to help with the scoring.

I think another big factor in this one is the pace. While the Raptors have been playing at one of the slowest paces in the NBA this season, the Mavs are just outside of the top ten in pace this year. This should add some value to the over tonight because Toronto will get sped up enough to get a few more attempts at scoring. That’s good news for a team that’s ranked 8th bets in the NBA in Offensive Rating at 103.2.

With that being said, the total seems like the play in this one. Dallas is both scoring and giving up around 100 points per game already this season, and while they haven’t been great at cashing the over on the road at 3-9 this season, the total for tonight has been discounted enough where I’m willing to take the bait.

 

The Sharp Pick
At 195½, the total is too low for what could be a nice offensive showdown north of the border. Without Carroll and Valanciunas, the Raptors’ defense has taken a step back, and while both of those guys are getting closer to a return to the court, it won’t be in time to stop Dirk Nowitzki and company tonight.

The total has already crept up a half point from where it opened at 195 on the NBA odds, and at some shops the number has even gone up to 196, and for good reason. Dallas is 9-6 cashing the over on the road this season, and they have cashed the over even better on the road recently in six of their last nine. Both of these teams average about 102 points per game on the road and at home respectfully, and while Toronto plays at a pretty slow pace, the Mavs play close to a top ten pace, which means the Raptors could get sped up some tonight. If that’s the case, take the over and add it to your NBA picks for tonight.