The Nets are fighting for one of the final 2 playoff spots in the East and Dallas are fighting for seeding position in the West. Which team will come out on top on the betting lines in this Saturday?
The Brooklyn Nets Can Win Because…
Their opponent is immersed in turmoil. It made the national headlines of sports pages on Wednesday and Thursday: Dallas point guard Rajon Rondo and head coach Rick Carlisle are not getting along. They had multiple shouting matches in and around the Mavericks’ win over Toronto on Tuesday, a sign of the tension and dissatisfaction that have engulfed the team since Rondo came over to Dallas from the Boston Celtics. And then Rondo was suspended for a game and the Mavericks lost without him in Atlanta on Wednesday.
Carlisle and some of the veteran players on the Dallas roster have tried to put a good spin on things, saying that Rondo is showing how much he really wants to win. Yet, as much as Rondo might want to win, he has to begin to see things the way Carlisle does. Rondo would like to call offensive plays on the court, but Carlisle wants to keep that responsibility while Rondo settles into Carlisle’s system. If this tension is not resolved, Dallas is going to come apart at the seams. Brooklyn therefore has a very realistic chance in this game, because the Mavericks aren’t going to fix things right away. It’s going to be a process that will take some time.
The Dallas Mavericks Can Win Because…
They still have better players than Brooklyn even if this Rondo-Carlisle clash might overshadow the Mavericks’ long-term plans. Despite all that Dallas has been going through, it had won three straight games before losing to Atlanta on Wednesday. Moreover, Dallas does have two full days off before playing this game on Saturday. The Mavericks needed some time away from the court before returning to action, and they got it. If this game had been on a Friday, there would be a slight yet more realistic chance that Dallas wouldn’t be as prepared. With the extra day off, though, the Mavericks should be in a better frame of mind and more ready to communicate properly.
A few other factors should be considered when picking this game. For one thing, Brooklyn plays at Houston on Friday night before playing this game on Saturday. Dallas should be a lot fresher against a team that will be concluding an eight-game road trip which began before the All-Star break. This will be the end of a five-game swing after the break, a stretch which has taken the Nets from Los Angeles to Denver to New Orleans to Texas. It’s hard to see Brooklyn playing with the energy needed to keep up with Monta Ellis, who is so quick off the dribble.
One final thing: Brooklyn just doesn’t beat winning teams very often, at least not recently. This is a great stat: the Nets have not beaten a team with a winning record since February 4, when they won at Toronto. When a team has gone over three weeks without beating a winning team, that’s a red flag for bettors.
Keep checking back with NBA Odds in order to get the best possible value out there for this game as betting lines where not available at moment of press.
The Nets don’t play well against teams above .500 and the Mavericks feast on losing teams. On top of that, the Mavs are rested and the Nets played last night in Houston. Take the Mavericks with your NBA picks.
Free NBA Pick: Dallas at Bovada