Toronto at Dallas NBA Odds, Betting Pick & TV Info
The Toronto Raptors are going to make the Eastern Conference playoffs but still have the carrot of finishing as high as third in the standings. They won’t slip lower than fourth. The Dallas Mavericks, meanwhile, are struggling and will need a late-season surge to have any shot at the West’s final spot. The Mavs are likely to be slight NBA betting home dogs Saturday vs. the Raptors.
Toronto at Dallas NBA Odds, Betting Pick & TV Info
Why Bet on Toronto?
The Raptors will get back power forward and trade acquisition Serge Ibaka for this game. He was suspended for Thursday’s trip to Miami for his role in a rare punches thrown fight with Chicago center Brook Lopez on Tuesday. You see guys shoving and pushing in the NBA all the time, but not haymakers thrown. It just so happened that neither Ibaka or Lopez landed one or they would have each been suspended longer.
The heated exchange erupted when Ibaka grabbed the ball and threw an elbow near the back of Lopez after a made 3-pointer, at which point Lopez fell backward into Ibaka and took a swipe at the ball. Ibaka appeared to shove Lopez, and Lopez threw a punch at and missed Ibaka, who retaliated by taking a swing at Lopez, barely connecting with the head of the Chicago center. Lopez also got a game.
Tuesday’s win was huge for Toronto as it beat Chicago 122-120 in OT. Not because the Bulls are all that good but due to the fact the Raptors had lost 11 straight in the series and were down 16 points at the time of the Ibaka-Lopez fight. It seemed to spur Toronto. It was the Raptors’ fifth comeback win this season in which they trailed by at least 15 points. That’s tied for second most in the NBA. It was the first time since Dec. 30, 2005 at Indiana that the Raptors rallied from a 16-point deficit in the second-half while making two-or- less three-pointers. Five of the Raptors’ nine wins since the All-Star break have been comeback victories.
DeMar DeRozan finished with a game-high 42 points vs. Chicago. It was DeRozan’s fifth 40-point game this season, the most by a Raptors in a single season. Vince Carter had four 40-point games during the 2000-01 and 2001-02 seasons, while Chris Bosh had four during the 2007-08 campaign. Toronto is 7-0 all-time when DeRozan scores 40 points in a game.
The Raptors beat Dallas 100-78 on March 13. DeRozan had 25 points. The Raptors led by 13 entering the fourth quarter, then opened the period with a 10-2 run that extended the lead to 21 in the opener of the Mavericks’ four-game road swing. Toronto held Dallas to just 36.5 percent shooting from the floor and outrebounded the Mavericks 46-27 on the defensive glass.
Why Bet on Dallas?
The Mavs are probably toast in terms of making the playoffs as they are 3.5 games behind No. 8 Denver and still have teams like Portland and New Orleans right in the mix.
Dallas made a smart deal at the trade deadline in landing Nerlens Noel from Philly. Noel has primarily served as a sixth man with the Mavs and recently missed a few games because of soreness in his surgically repaired left knee, but the early returns have been encouraging. He is averaging 9.5 points, 7.1 rebounds and 1.2 blocks in 22.5 minutes per game. His net rating (plus-8.2 points per 100 possessions) is the best among Mavs who have played at least 100 minutes this season. Noel has seen an increase in points, rebounds and blocks per game since being dealt to the Mavericks.
“I definitely feel like I’m in a better position here,” Noel said. “I’m trying to maximize it. It’s definitely a good position to fulfill my potential. I’m going to continue to show Coach I can be in the game more and make a difference. I think that will take care of itself in due time.”
Coach Rick Carlisle is concerned that struggling Harrison Barnes “maybe being a little out of gas” after playing every game this season. Barnes doesn’t see fatigue as an issue even though he had just five points Tuesday in a blowout loss to Golden State.
The Mavericks are 9-3 this season when they produce at least six double-figure scorers (all 12 of those games have come since 12/12 vs. Denver). The Mavericks are 8-0 this season when they score at least 60 points in the opening half. All eight of Dallas’ 60-plus point first halves have come since 12/12.
Dirk Nowitzki is averaging 18.3 points and 7.6 rebounds per game over his last nine games. He is shooting 52.4 percent (66-of- 126) from the field and 18-of- 40 (.450) from deep in that span.
Toronto has won three straight and six of the last eight meetings between the two teams after the Mavericks won 20 of 25 against the Raptors from 2/20/00-11/7/12. In that early loss this season, Mavs starting forward Wesley Matthews with a right calf strain with 1:07 to play in the first half. Barnes scored 18 points with Nowitzki chipping in 17. Dallas was outrebounded 55-34 overall and set a Toronto opponent season low in points.
Toronto at Dallas Betting Pick: Dallas Mavericks
Toronto is around a .500 team on the road, while Dallas is 15-5 all-time at home vs. the Raptors.