On paper, this game should be indistinguishable from any other. The Mavericks and Sacramento Kings have never been rivals. Sure, the future of two franchises was altered when the Kings passed on Luka Doncic in favor of Marvin Bagley, and the two teams engaged in a trade when the Mavs salary dumped Harrison Barnes prior to the summer of 2019. That’s about it.
Except for the fact that the Mavericks lost two late-season games last year when they were fighting to avoid the play-in tournament and the Clippers. The two losses to the Kings were hard for Mavs fans to shake and they came at a time when the team was performing well against other playoff contenders. Because of that, Sunday's matchup against the Kings feels more important than it probably is. With that being said, let’s take a look at the game from a gambling perspective.
All odds are courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook and are current as of 10 pm CST, October 30.
Spread: Mavs -4.5(-110)
Moneyline: Mavs -195
This Mavs team is as uninspiring a 3-2 team as we’ve ever seen. Dwight Powell is better at escorting opposing players to the rim than your church’s usher. The starting lineup doesn’t work. Luka is sleepwalking through long stretches of games. Kristaps Porzingis has already missed 40% of the season’s games. The head coach is either a stubborn narcissist or insists on playing one in post-game interviews. The Kings were a problem for the Mavs when things were looking great last season. It’s impossible to think they would run roughshod through this year’s iteration of the team.
Luka Doncic is the only reason the Mavs are favored against the Kings who are also 3-2. Sacramento believes in itself and they enter Sunday’s game with the utmost confidence. If Luka approaches the game with the same lackadaisical attitude, Davion Mitchell will ensure he has a long night. Again, we’d never recommend betting against the Mavs but we do have an alternative that could prove to be profitable.
Take the Kings to win the first quarter. Jason Kidd’s insistence on starting Dwight Powell has led to some predictable bad starts early in games. Fade the Mavs starting lineup for the first quarter and hope that Luka and company can have a strong showing in the second half.
Advice: Fade the Mavs in the 1st quarter.
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The defense has been better than expected at times. Much to everyone’s chagrin, it’s the offense that has struggled. Vegas can’t set a line low enough where I would feel comfortable taking the over.
Advice: Take the Under
Two Team Moneyline Parlay
Mavs and Blazers +188
The Blazers are probably a better team than the Hornets. The Hornets enter the game having lost two of their last three. Lillard, on the other hand, appears to be on his way out of his early-season slump.
Advice: This is worth at least a unit. The Mavs Moneyline is too high to bet on its own and only a fool would put money on the Mavs to cover any sort of spread against this team.