Lakers vs Mavericks: The Value Pick for Tuesday's Matchup

Action Network NBA contributor Kenny Ducey previews how to bet Lakers vs. Mavericks in Tuesday's TNT doubleheader.

Lakers vs. Mavericks Prediction, Picks

Lakers Odds -4.5
Mavericks Odds +4.5
Moneyline -190 / +158
Over/Under 231
Time Tuesday, 7:30 p.m. ET
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

Here’s everything you need to know about Lakers vs. Mavericks on Tuesday, Dec. 12 — our expert prediction and betting picks for today.

After capturing the NBA’s inaugural In-Season Tournament, the Los Angeles Lakers will look to continue to put their form to the test in a tough road game against the Dallas Mavericks.

Dallas enters this one with three straight wins off the backs of three excellent showings from its offense, but could the Lakers’ staunch defense prove to be an obstacle on Tuesday night?

Let’s get to our Lakers vs. Mavericks prediction and pick.

Lakers vs Mavericks Prediction

Pick: Lakers -3

Lakers Betting Outlook

It’s safe to say the Lakers have hit their stride as we near the two-month mark of the NBA season. After much fluctuation on the defensive side of the ball, L.A. has settled in beautifully, ranking second in efficiency over the last 10 games to put them just outside the top five for the entire season.

Their excellence has been felt across the board, but the Lakers have been particularly strong at the rim, allowing 64.2% shooting according to Cleaning the Glass to rank ninth in the NBA. They’ve also done a great job on the perimeter, ranking 13th in three-point defense. Overall, this team is second in points per play in the halfcourt.

Offensively, things have been a bit trickier given the Lakers are unable to do much damage from three on a consistent basis, but they’ve absolutely thrived inside with a fifth-ranked 70.1% field goal percentage at the rim, and they’ve also been able to make the most of their many transition possessions with 130.5 points per play in those scenarios.

Of course, none of this ever matters if LeBron James and Anthony Davis don’t suit up for the Lakers on a nightly basis, and both do enter this game with questionable tags due to nagging injuries. Still, we should note that both have made a habit of appearing on the injury report over the years and there’s no real concern they won’t play here given the state of the line.

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Mavericks Betting Outlook

Speaking of injuries, the Mavericks are a bit of a mess at the moment even though they’ve now won three straight, including a big shorthanded victory over the Grizzlies on Monday. Kyrie Irving, Grant Williams, Josh Green and Maxi Kleber all missed that game, and the chances of any of these guys playing on the second night of a back-to-back seem slim.

That could complicate matters here against a well-rested Lakers team that hasn’t played since it won the In-Season Tournament title on Saturday.

Dallas nearly suffered a brutal loss against L.A. in the only meeting between the teams earlier in the season. The Mavs blew a 20-point lead in the fourth quarter only to sneak past the Lakers thanks to Irving, who lifted the Mavericks to victory late and finished with 28 points. Williams also did a decent job on defense against a tough Lakers frontcourt, and without the pair this game would have almost certainly been won by the Lakers.

The injuries are certainly going to be felt on Tuesday as the Mavericks look to continue their brilliance from three. They’re pulling from deep at the second-highest clip in the league, according to Cleaning the Glass, and they currently sit firmly inside the top 10 when it comes to success rate from outside.

Irving, Williams, Green and Kleber are all huge contributors to Dallas’ three-point attack, and even with Luka Doncic shooting with great volume, it’s hard to deny this team will certainly take a step back in that category against one of the league’s better perimeter defenses.

Lakers vs. Mavericks Picks, Odds

The ability of the Lakers to stop the three, coupled with mounting injuries for the Mavericks and fatigue will put the home team behind the proverbial 8-ball in this one. That’s before we even touch on the big mismatch inside, which will see arguably the league’s most talented team around the rim go against a Dallas team ranked third-worst at defending within four feet of the basket.

Once again, without Williams and Kleber, that matchup should only get juicier for the Lakers, and when you consider there’s a similar discrepancy in the team’s rebounding numbers, this is surely a game in which the Lakers should flex their muscles in the frontcourt and win.

L.A. didn’t have its best showing on the glass against the Mavericks when they met a few weeks ago, but it still managed to win the war down low, and it also held Dallas to 32% shooting from three. I expect the Lakers to pick up where they left off in that explosive fourth quarter and torch a tired and depleted Mavericks team on the road for a big win.

Pick: Lakers -3