The Dallas Mavericks travel to Georgia on Wednesday in hopes of shaking off a serious funk against the Atlanta Hawks. It’s time to continue our NBA odds series and make a Mavericks-Hawks prediction and pick.
The Mavericks are 8-13 straight up and 9-12 against the spread. Dallas is mired in a six-game losing streak, most recently falling to the Phoenix Suns.
The Hawks stand at 10-10 overall, but they are 11-9 against the spread. In Atlanta’s most recent game, they lost to the Los Angeles Lakers by an eight-point margin.
Here’s how sportsbooks have set the opening Mavericks-Hawks odds.
NBA Odds: Mavericks-Hawks Odds
Dallas Mavericks -1.5 (-109)
Atlanta Hawks +1.5 (-111)
Over 223.5 Points (-110)
Under 223.5 Points (-110)
Why The Mavericks Could Cover The Spread
Dallas has been on a brutal run of late, but there are some positive signs Mavericks bettors can look at in Wednesday’s matchup.
For one, Luka Doncic has been excellent over the cold stretch, averaging 30.2 points on 50% shooting from the field to go along with 9.2 assists and 7.2 rebounds.
Luka has a tasty matchup ahead of him with the Hawks’ best perimeter defender out. De’Andre Hunter, who would usually draw this defensive assignment, will miss this game with a knee injury.
With Hunter out of the equation, Doncic is due for a big night. Still, the Mavericks have proven they’ll need more than Doncic to win games.
After Doncic, the Mavs have four players averaging double-digit scoring. For Dallas to have a chance in this one, they’ll need big nights out of two of them at the least.
While the Hawks have defended the perimeter extremely well, they have been more vulnerable inside the arc. Atlanta gives up the fifth-most paint points in the league, conceding just under 50 points a game at the hoop.
This is good news for the Mavs, who have been incapable of scoring consistently from deep all year. Look for Dallas to pound the painted area in hopes of neutralizing the Hawks’ defensive advantage from beyond the arc.
Why The Hawks Could Cover The Spread
One of the biggest advantages the Hawks have in this matchup is momentum. While the Hawks are only 2-2 in their last four matchups, they’ve played fairly well in all of them.
Atlanta beat a depleted Clippers team and held a potent Wizards offense to 100 points. Against the Lakers and Nets, two legitimate championship contenders, the Hawks kept it close to the end. Their downfall came in the final period in both games.
On the other hand, the Mavericks have been downright bad.
Not only have they lost six straight, they’ve failed to cover in each matchup. This is mostly due to the Mavs’ sputtering offense.
In the last four games, Dallas has failed to top 110 points. Granted, they were playing some great defensive teams in the Jazz and the Suns, but the Hawks aren’t too shabby defensively themselves.
Atlanta has the 10th-best defensive rating in the league while holding opponents to the second-lowest overall field-goal percentage.
Against a Dallas team that struggles to score, especially from the three-point line, this could be another nightmare for Mavericks scorers.
Final Mavericks-Hawks Prediction & Pick
It’s hard to bet against a team with one of the best players in the world to lose a seventh straight game, but I just haven’t seen anything out of the Mavs that really inspires me to back them. The Hawks, on the other hand, have shown encouraging signs against top teams lately, and their defense has been exceptional. I’ll take Atlanta to hold serve on their home floor and keep Doncic and company in the losing column in a close one.
FINAL SCORE PREDICTION: ATL 112, DAL 108 (ATL +1.5)