A Dallas Mavericks vs Charlotte Hornets game sounds fun in theory. But with Luka Doncic and LaMelo Ball sidelined, these incomplete teams are in a weird spot. Without their main stars, how should you bet on the game? Let’s dig into it.
All odds are courtesy of DraftKings sportsbook and are current as of 11:30 a.m. CT, December 13.
Spread: Mavs -2.5 (-105)
You know the shrug emoji? This is the basketball game version of the shrug emoji. The Hornets are hovering around .500 and the Mavs are .500 exactly. Both teams have their sights set on making some noise in the playoffs. Both superstars (LaMelo and Luka) won’t be playing.
I hate betting on games when the main players aren’t playing. You never know what you’ll get with secondary guys, and the games are just flat-out less fun. On the other hand, throwing a little money on a game without the superstars makes it a little more worthwhile to watch.
My gut is telling me the Mavs will come away with a win at home, despite this being the second night of a back-to-back, but I’ve been wrong a lot.
Advice: Save yourself some stress and stay away from this one.
I feel similarly with this over/under to how I felt in the previous section. When the two main guys are out, who knows what will happen?
The Mavs only gave up 84 points last night, but that was against a G League team (aka the OKC Thunder), so it’s tough to compare that to a Hornets team who can put up points in a hurry.
Advice: If you feel so inclined, the over is worth a unit. But stay away from the under.
Two-Team Moneyline Parlay
Mavs and Bucks: +219
If you’re confident in the Mavs’ ability to win without Luka, but want to improve your payout a little, consider this parlay.
The Bucks are playing in Boston tonight, and look like a team who’s about to really hit their stride. Outside of Brook Lopez, they’re healthy and have a hungry Giannis Antetokounmpo, which is arguably the biggest weapon in the league.
This pick is more about my belief in the Bucks than my disbelief in the Celtics.
Advice: Have some fun. Sprinkle a little on this parlay.