Mavericks vs. Jazz Odds
|Time||10:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.|
The Dallas Mavericks will begin a four game road trip starting on Christmas Day when they travel to Utah to take on the Jazz.
Like many teams recently, COVID-19 has ravaged Dallas’ roster, forcing many of their key players to sit this game out. However, it appears that Utah has been able to avoid the virus up to this point and is essentially fully healthy outside of a few injuries.
Will the shorthanded Mavericks be able to hold their ground, or will we see the Jazz continue their dominant season?
Mavericks Rotation Players in Tough Spot
Getting the opportunity to play on Christmas Day is something that many teams relish. Outside of the playoffs, it is arguably the biggest stage for many teams, allowing them to showcase their talent against the league’s best.
However, the Mavericks enter this matchup in a horrible situation, and going up against the Jazz only makes the situation worse.
Because of COVID-19, Dallas will be forced to play without Luka Doncic, Tim Hardaway Jr., Reggie Bullock, Trey Burke, Maxi Kleber, and several others. In addition, Kristaps Porzingis will be a game-time decision with a toe injury, making things even more foggy for the Mavs.
That leaves Jalen Brunson and Dorian Finney-Smith as the primary modes of scoring for this squad, both of whom have played upwards of 40 minutes per game in Dallas’ last four matchups.
Even before running into some health issues, Dallas had its struggles when fully healthy. The Mavs have won just four of their last 10 games, and in that span have averaged just under 103 points per game while shooting 43% from the field. They have held their opponents to an average of just 100 points per game in that same span, but being this shorthanded against a lethal offense like Utah could potentially reverse that trend.
Will the Jazz Remain Dominant at Home?
Not many teams have been able to stop the Jazz evidenced by the fact that they are one of the few teams left in the NBA single-digit losses.
Over the course of their last 10 games, Utah is 8-2 overall and has posted an Offensive Rating of 121.1 in that span, the best in the league according to NBA Advanced Stats. Six of their eight wins have been by double digits as well, further proving how dominant their offensive attack can be.
Donovan Mitchell remains Utah’s primary source of scoring, and when he finds a rhythm he can be one of the most dangerous players in the league. Mitchell has scored at least 27 points in nine of his last eleven games, and he will likely be able to find whatever he wants against a Mavs team that will be without several of their primary defenders.
A lot of Utah’s success is tied to its stellar defensively play as well. They come into this game with the sixth best Defensive Rating, allowing just 106.7 points per 100 possessions this season, and have held their opponents to 44.2% from the floor overall and 32.8% from behind the arc.
Mitchell is obviously a stud, but Utah has proven they can get production from many other guys as well and cause issues for their opponents from just about anywhere on the floor.
Dallas is already in a bad spot due to COVID-19, and running into an almost fully healthy Jazz is as close to a worse case scenario as we have seen this season.
Utah is dominant on their home floor this year, where they are 12-6 overall, and they have slowly become one of the most efficient shooting teams in the NBA, leading the league in both field goal percentage and 3-point field goal percentage. Even if both teams were healthy Utah would have the upper-hand, and I think it is likely we see another double-digit Jazz win on Christmas.
Pick: Utah Jazz -12.5 (-110)