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NBA Playoffs Odds: Mavs vs. Thunder
Carrie Stroup here bringing you the NBA Playoffs odds for Game 1 of the Mavs vs. Thunder. You can find all the latest NBA Playoffs odds at Sportsbook.com here and receive up to $250 in FREE CASH when opening an account. Many of these games you will be able to bet on LIVE.
Sportsbook.com Game 1 Line & Total: OKC -7.5 & 194
Series Line: Thunder -550/Mavs +400
The defending champion Mavericks are not expected to remain in the playoffs for very long as they face a Thunder team that most experts think will represent the West in the NBA Finals.
Dallas beat Oklahoma City in five games in last year’s Western Conference Finals, but the Thunder could have prevailed in every one of those contests, losing by just 9, 6, 7 and 4 points. And the Mavs no longer have two key players from that series in C Tyson Chandler (10.6 RPG in 2011 West finals) and PG Jose Juan Barea (11.4 PPG in 2011 West finals). Last year’s experience was invaluable for OKC and now this young team is ready to dominate an erratic Mavs squad that ended the season losing four of its final six contests, allowing a whopping 106.3 PPG (47% FG, 41.4% threes) during this slump.
This season’s series is 3-1 in favor of Oklahoma City, which is clearly the more consistent and deeper team in this matchup. The Thunder also have the league’s top scorer in SF Kevin Durant (28.0 PPG), and PG Russell Westbrook has matured greatly since his poor 2011 West Finals performance (36% FG, 20% threes, 4.8 TOPG). Westbrook has pumped in 23.6 PPG on 46% FG clip this season, including 22.8 PPG against Dallas. Thirty-nine-year-old Jason Kidd will have a hard time keeping Westbrook in check.
The lack of home-court advantage will really hurt Dallas, which was a dreadful 13-20 on the road this year, scoring just 94.2 PPG (44% FG) away from home. The Mavs have also been a subpar rebounding team at -1.1 RPG, which will really hurt against a Thunder team that ranks fifth in the NBA with +2.8 RPG margin.
PF Dirk Nowitzki (21.6 PPG, 6.8 RPG) has always thrived against the Thunder. He torched them for 32.2 PPG in last year’s playoff series and has averaged 28.7 PPG against them in the past four regular seasons. Nowitzki is also hot right now, finishing the season with 26.0 PPG on 51% FG in his final five contests. Kidd (6.2 PPG, 5.5 APG) has gotten plenty of rest, sitting out past final two games, and has done a fantastic job running the point in his past five contests with 37 assists and just seven turnovers. He just hasn’t done much against the Thunder this year, scoring 3.0 PPG with 5.7 APG in the three meetings. SG Jason Terry (15.1 PPG) is the key to Dallas hanging around in this series. The streaky shooter is currently in a cold spell though, making just 7-of-21 FG (2-of-12 threes) in his past two games. He has shot very well against OKC though, pouring in 18.5 PPG on 11-of-23 three-pointers in the four meetings.
The Thunder finished third in the league in both scoring (103.1 PPG) and shooting (47.1% FG), while also placing fourth in the NBA in FG Pct. defense (42.7%). Much of this had to do with a league-high 8.2 blocks per game, 3.7 of them coming from PF Serge Ibaka.
Durant (28.0 PPG, 8.0 RPG) was able to pump in 28.0 PPG in last year’s West finals versus Dallas, but made just 42.9% FG and 23.3% threes. He’s averaged 25.5 PPG against the Mavs this season, but made just 44.6% of his shots. However, Durant enters this series on quite a roll, scoring at least 24 points in eight straight games, averaging 31.6 PPG on 47% FG and 44.2% threes during this stretch. Westbrook (23.6 PPG, 5.5 APG) was in a bit of a funk for a five-game stretch (13.8 PPG on 30.5% FG and 1-of-12 threes), but finished his season with 30 points and nine assists in a loss to Denver. The only question mark for the Thunder is the health of SF James Harden (16.8 PPG, 3.7 APG) after he suffered a concussion from the errant Metta World Peace elbow to his head last Sunday. He’s expected to be in uniform when the series begins Saturday night, and looks to shoot better than the 39% FG clip he had against Dallas this season. Harden did have a strong West Finals in 2011 though, dropping 14.0 PPG (54% FG) and 6.0 RPG on the Mavs during the series.
- Carrie Stroup, Gambling911.com Senior Reporter
Submitted by Carrie Stroup on Fri, 04/27/2012 - 20:40