Both the Indiana Pacers and Dallas Mavericks were expected to be among the worst teams in the NBA this season. The 34-25 Pacers have blown those expectations this year, while the 18-42 Mavericks have been even worse than most people thought. The squads will battle in Dallas tonight (8:30pm ET Monday).
Indiana has won four games in a row, as well as eight of its last 10 contests. The Pacers have been rebounding very well and continue to get excellent play from surprise All-Star guard Victor Oladipo.
Dallas has embraced its tanking reality, losing four games in a row and 11 of its last 13 contests. The Mavericks’ ownership has essentially stated that it is angling for a top pick in the upcoming draft, though it’s not head coach Rick Carlisle’s style to sacrifice the present for the future.
How will today’s tilt in Dallas in play out? We’ll discuss some key questions and make our preview’s Indiana Pacers vs Dallas Mavericks predictions and picks at the best betting odds with the USA sports betting companies.
Has Cory Joseph Found Consistency as the Pacers’ Interim Point Guard?
The Pacers haven’t missed a beat since starting point guard Darren Collison suffered his knee injury. Indiana has won four of its five games without Collison in that time frame.
Indiana’s replacement starter for Collison, Joseph, has had his ups and downs since Collison’s injury. In the first three games as a starter, Joseph scored a total of nine points on 3-of-16 shooting in 91 minutes. Since then, though, he has scored 30 points on 12-of-25 shooting in 62 minutes.
Joseph isn’t the type to go off for 25 to 30 points in a game. However, an efficient 12 to 15 points would go a long way in taking the pressure off the other Pacers starters today. He can’t be a complete no-show again.
Can Dallas Push Through its Significant Rebounding Issues?
The Mavericks have been the worst rebounding team in the league this year. They rank last in rebounding percentage (47.2) in the NBA.
In their last three games, they have been particularly bad. The Sacramento Kings, Los Angeles Lakers and Utah Jazz combined to outrebound Dallas by 34 boards. None of those opponents are particularly tough on the glass, either.
Indiana has been merely mediocre on the glass overall this season, but its last four games have been a very different story. The Pacers have grabbed 49 more rebounds than their opponents in that stretch.
Dallas’ interior personnel is not good for rebounding. Dirk Nowitzki and Harrison Barnes are the two starting big men and neither of them are close to being bruisers on the glass. The team may need to play Dwight Powell and Salah Mejri more in this contest.
Which Squad Will Force More Turnovers From Their Opponent?
Both the Mavericks and Pacers are among the best teams in the league at winning the turnover battle on a nightly basis. They rank third (minus-1.8) and fifth (minus-1.6) in the NBA respectively in turnover differential.
This is an example of both teams’ good coaching and presence of smart veteran players. However, if one team’s energy is noticeably higher than the other’s, the turnover battle could become lopsided.
Dallas’ home-court advantage and knowledge that it will likely lose the rebounding battle could cause them to play with more energy on defense, leading to more turnovers. However, Indiana is a younger, more athletic team and may just flip the results of the turnover battle.
Our Preview’s Indiana Pacers at Dallas Mavericks Picks & Betting Predictions
We are at the point of the NBA season where the haves separate themselves from the have-nots. The Pacers are a good team hoping to improve their playoff position, while the Mavericks are a bad team and have less motivation to play well.
Indiana should take this game on the road with their advantages in talent and motivation. Given that opinion, here are our Indiana Pacers vs Dallas Mavericks predictions and picks at the bookies’ best odds:
- The Pacers are generally 3-point favorites with all major betting outlets. The right choice is betting on Indiana -3pts @ best odds -110 with Bookmaker or MyBookie. It is -115 with Bovada and BetOnline.
- The young Pacers will dictate pace and make this game faster than the Mavs want it to be. Place your bet on the over 210 @ -110 with Bovada, 5Dimes, MyBookie, Bookmaker or BetOnline.