First to 15 NBA Odds & Picks: Luka's Return Give Dallas the Edge

Action Network Senior Editor Malik Smith breaks down how to bet the Race to 15 in Wednesday's Western conference battle between the Warriors and Mavericks.

There are so many ways to bet an NBA game, but for those bettors who can’t bear to sweat the full 48 minutes, there are other markets that offer more instant satisfaction. One of those markets is the Race to 15 Points. It’s as simple as the name suggests: The first team to hit 15 points cashes the bet.

As the NBA regular season slowly winds down, the intensity is quickly heating up around the Association. Wednesday’s NBA slate is packed with games that have larger implications and should have plenty of intensity from the opening tip. Here’s a look at tonight’s first to 15 odds and pick.

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Golden State Warriors vs. Dallas Mavericks

First to 15 Odds Warriors: -122 | Mavericks: -104
Time | TV 7:30 p.m. ET | ESPN
SportsBook FanDuel

Let’s start with the most important news first: Luka Doncic, who has missed the past five games with a thigh injury, is probable to return to the lineup for the Mavericks Wednesday. Tonight’s game is crucial for the standings with the Mavericks and Warriors battling for a tiebreaker in their final meeting of the regular season.

The Mavericks and Warriors have been near to the bottom of the league in first quarter offense over their past 10 games: The Mavericks rank 19th averaging 28.7 points and the Warriors rank 26th averaging 27.1 points. Defensively, the Warriors have been the worst team in the NBA in terms of first quarter point differential -5.3.

Over that 10-game stretch, the Warriors been the first to 15 just four times and for the season, they are 18-19 on the road in the Race to 15 standings. The Mavericks have been able compete early in games despite missing Doncic and Kyrie Irving going 7-3 over the past 10 games.

Having Doncic back is huge for this offense and even without Irving (questionable) suiting up, their offense should see a steady boost, especially early on in the game. The Warriors can’t be trusted on the road and their recent defense — in first quarters and full games — over the past 10 games can’t be trusted either. I lean toward the Mavs here.

Pick: Mavericks -104