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NBA Game Preview: Dallas Mavericks at Denver Nuggets – 10/29

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Game: Dallas Mavericks at Denver Nuggets  

Time: 10:00 p.m. ET 

Odds: Mavericks +120, Nuggets -140  

Total: 219.5 

Dallas continues its road trip with a visit to Ball Arena in Denver to take on the Nuggets tonight. The Mavericks are coming off a win over San Antonio just last night. Luka Doncic had 25 points to lead the Mavs to a 104-99 win over the Spurs. Doncic is now averaging 24 points, 9.3 rebounds, and 7.8 assists per game for Dallas. 

Kristaps Porzingis did not play against the Spurs with a back issue and he is listed as questionable for tonight’s game. Porzingis is only averaging 12.7 points and 6.0 rebounds per game so far this season. He is only playing roughly 26 minutes a game as well. Regardless of whether he can play or not, Dallas needs to figure out how to shoot better.  

The Mavs were dead last in the league in shooting percentage before last night. They moved up a couple of spots and are now 28th in the NBA shooting 41.8 percent from the field. Dallas shot over 46 percent in last night’s win over San Antonio, but overall this season the Mavs offense has been suspect.  

The same could be said for Denver which is 2-2 in its four games so far. The Nuggets also have an injury issue. Reigning league MVP Nikola Jokic left Tuesday’s game with the Jazz with an injury. He is listed as questionable for tonight’s game. Jokic is averaging 26.8 points per game – seventh in the NBA – this season. He is also carrying the Nuggets on his back. 

Denver has been without Jamal Murray and will continue to be until the Nuggets guard is ready to go. Murray is recovering from a knee injury. Without Murray, Denver’s offense has not been all that great. After Jokic, Will Barton averages 16.3 points a game. Aaron Gordon (13.0) and Michael Porter Jr. (11.50 average in double figures, but there is not another Nugget that can take some of the load off of Jokic. 

Neither team has been very efficient on offense this season. In fact, both teams rank near the bottom of the league in offensive efficiency. Dallas ranks 22nd in offensive efficiency and the Nuggets rank 24th. Both teams also play at slower paces. Denver is 24th in the league in possessions per game. Dallas is 28th 

In four games this season, Dallas scored 116 in a win over Houston. The other three games, they scored 104, 103, and 87. The Mavs average 102.5 points per game. Denver is much the same scoring 110 twice this season and 87 and 102 in their other two games. 

The Under trends for both teams with seven of the teams’ combined eight games this season going Under the posted total. Neither team has been effective at covering the spread either. Dallas is 1-3 ATS this season and Denver, which is a 2.5-point favorite tonight, covered its first game of the season and is 0-3 ATS in their last three games.