Pelicans +6.5 & the 'Over' vs. Mavericks for Your NBA Picks

Matthew Jordan

Wednesday, December 10, 2014 6:48 PM UTC

Wednesday, Dec. 10, 2014 6:48 PM UTC

Likely to be two tired teams in Dallas on Wednesday night as the Mavericks come off a Tuesday game in Memphis, while New Orleans hosted the NY Knicks. Dallas opened as a 6.5-point favorite on BetOnline NBA odds with a total of 210.

Mavs Pushed Around in Memphis
I picked against the Mavericks on Tuesday in Memphis (and took the over) and indeed Dallas did lose 114-105, although it was the type of high-scoring game that would normally favor the Mavs, the NBA's No. 1 offense. Chandler Parsons was terrific for Dallas with 30 points on 10-for-18 and the Mavs got a combined 35 points from point guards Jameer Nelson (season-high 18) and J.J. Barea (season-best 17), but Dirk Nowitzki was just 4-for-17 from the field for 11 points; he's shooting only 36.1 percent overall in the past four games. Leading scorer Monta Ellis was worse, going 1-for-11 for 2 points. He did injure his right elbow a bit in the Mavericks' win on Sunday and was considered questionable for Tuesday. He expects to keep playing through it.

The Grizzlies are perhaps the most post-oriented team in the NBA with Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph, and they dominated down low by outscoring Dallas a whopping 52-26 in the paint. Memphis had a 22-0 paint advantage in the third quarter when it outscored Dallas 36-17. Dallas starting center Tyson Chandler was scoreless in 32 minutes. How does a 7-footer who plays 32 minutes go scoreless in a basketball game? Got me. Perhaps because Dallas launched 40 3-pointers. If Dallas has one weakness, it's lack of bulk in the post behind Chandler. Put simply: the Mavs are a bit soft down low. Among the top eight teams in the West, the Mavericks have the worst record in head-to-head play.

Dallas is 6-5 against the NBA spread at home this season and 8-3 'over/under.'


Pelicans Begin Tough Stretch
The New Orleans Pelicans enter on a two-game winning streak after dropping five of its previous six. The Pelicans beat the visiting Knicks 104-93 on Tuesday. Tyreke Evans has been playing pretty well since moving from shooting guard to small forward in the starting lineup and he was 11-for-15 for 27 points. Anthony Davis finished with 18 points, eight rebounds and three blocks. Omer Asik had 16 points and 14 rebounds. The Pelicans shot 50 percent overall and handled the Knicks in the paint, outrebounding New York by 13 and outscoring the Knicks by 14 in there.

This is the sixth back-to-back for the season for the Pelicans, and they have won four of the previous five. This starts a tough stretch of schedule for New Orleans that could determine if it's really a playoff contender in the absurdly deep West. Beginning with this game, the Pelicans play 10 of their next 12 against playoff teams from last season or teams currently that would make the playoffs. For example, Cleveland and Golden State are up next and they might be the best two teams in the NBA. The only breathers look to be Utah on Dec. 16 and at Indiana on Dec. 23. Going from Tuesday's standings, the Pelicans' next 12 opponents have a combined record of 136-59.

On the road, New Orleans is 5-7 against the spread at sportsbooks this season and 6-6 'over/under.'


Season Series
Back on Nov. 1 in New Orleans, the Mavericks were 1-point underdogs on NBA odds with a total of 203 at sportsbooks. Dallas won 109-104 despite blowing a 17-point lead. Parsons had 20 points to lead Dallas while Nowitzki had 17. The Pelicans got big games from Davis (31 points, 15 rebounds and three blocks), Evans (22 points, 10 rebounds) and Jrue Holiday (24 points). However, the Pelicans shot only 42.7 percent to the Mavericks' 51.7 percent. The victory was the Mavericks' eighth straight in the series. At home, the Mavs are 19-2 all time vs. New Orleans and have won three in a row. So while it has been a one-sided series, 10 of the past 16 games have been decided by five points or fewer.

NBA Free Picks: Pelicans +6.5 and 'over' 210 at 5Dimes. When making your NBA picks keep in mind that New Orleans has covered six straight in the second of a back-to-back. Dallas is 3-7 ATS in its past 10 overall. The 'over' is 6-0 in Dallas' past six at home. The road team has covered four of the past five in this series. Ellis being limited really increases the Pelicans' chances of not just covering but winning outright.

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