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NBA Prediction: Miami Heat @ Dallas Mavericks

Written by:
C Costigan
Published on:
Dec/31/2020

NBA fans will get a rematch of the 2006 and 2011 Finals when the Miami Heat visit the Dallas Mavericks on New Year’s Night, although the American Airlines Center will not open to fans for the contest.  Jazz Sports offers a generous welcome bonus (max bonus $1000)

The Mavericks (1-2) opened the season with a disappointing loss in Phoenix and then a rout at the hands of the Lakers, on national television. However, they rebounded nicely in their third game, setting an NBA record in largest halftime lead, with 50, as they led the Clippers, 77-27, at the intermission. They ended up winning, 124-73.

Next up come the Heat (1-1), who lost their opener by six in Orlando before beating New Orleans at home, 111-98. They face Milwaukee on Tuesday and Wednesday before heading to Dallas, while the Mavericks will host Charlotte on Wednesday ahead of Friday’s game.

Miami Heat at Dallas Mavericks (Friday, January 1)

When: Friday, January 1, 2021, 7:00 pm ET
Where: American Airlines Center, Dallas
TV: Fox Sports
Radio: 790 AM The Ticket Miami / ESPN Radio 103.3 FM Dallas
JAZZ Sports Odds: TBD (Go Here For Live Odds)

Why the Heat Will Win

The Heat got a huge game out of Duncan Robinson in their win over the Pelicans, as he made seven three-balls, tying a record for the most makes from downtown in an NBA game on Christmas Day. He totaled 23 points, ahead of Goran Dragic (18), Bam Adebayo (17) and Avery Bradley (12). Precious Achiuwa and Tyler Herro also hit double figures with 11 points apiece. Jimmy Butler did have to leave at the half with stiffness in his right ankle. The team shot 51 percent on the night, which made life hard for New Orleans.

New Orleans started the game on a 17-9 run, but then Miami went on a 52-21 tear over the next 13:30, hitting nine shots from downtown. If the Heat can keep up their hot shooting and their terrific ball distribution, they can make life hard for the Mavericks.

Why the Mavericks Will Win

Rookie Josh Richardson explained Dallas’ rout of the Clippers this way after the game: “We just got up and played well. We played with a sense of urgency.” Richardson had 21 points, but Luka Doncic led the team with 24 points, 18 in the first half. In the first quarter, he had 13, which matched the total for the Clippers in that opening period. Tim Hardaway Jr chipped in 18 points against the Clippers, who did not have Kawhi Leonard for the game.

While the Clippers started the second half with a 10-0 run, they nailed four straight three-balls (three from Hardaway Jr) to reestablish their lead. Doncic now has 83 points in the first three games despite putting their starters on the bench for the fourth quarter. If the Mavericks can rebound as well as they did against the Clippers, and if their defense can remain intense, this could be a contending team this year.

The Final Word

The Miami Heat made it to the NBA Finals a year ago, while the Mavericks went out in the first round. Right now, though, even without Kristaps Porzingis, the Mavericks seem to have the higher ceiling. I expect to see lots of offense, and I like Dallas to win in a high-scoring affair.

*This article courtesy of Jazz Sports

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