In game 3 the Mavericks gave hope of a competitive series being on the table after the Suns were impressive at home. The obvious question that will determine if there truly is a series here, is can Dallas do it again and in the same fashion as game 3?
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Suns vs. Mavericks Betting Odds
*Lines accurate at time of publication
Suns vs. Mavericks Best Bets
Suns -2 (-110, DraftKings)
Game 3 was about as unimpressive as Phoenix has looked in a while, even considering the struggles against New Orleans. There are a couple of obvious changes that can be made or at least should regress to a more normal level that even the playing field and lead to a bet on Phoenix.
The most obvious is the turnovers were out of control, especially early. Chris Paul’s seven turnovers were the most he has had in a playoff game since game 1 against the Jazz in 2018. The 17 turnovers the Suns had was the leading factor in the Mavs having 14 more shots in the game. In game 1, Phoenix was +6 and in game 2, Dallas was +3. A +14 margin in either direction is a flashing red light for regression.
Likely related to the turnovers are the lack of shots for Devin Booker. Booker averaged 19.5 shots in the first two games of the series and only got off 13 in game 3. Getting the best scorer on the team closer to his average of shots should help stabilize the offense. Phoenix needs to just hit their open shots as well. They were 36.4% on wide-open threes in game 3 and need to limit the number of wide-open opportunities for Dallas, they had 26 wide-open threes in game 3.
If both of these teams play closer to who they have been and Phoenix has shown the ability to make adjustments, then Phoenix should take a stranglehold on this series.
Risk: 1.1 units on DraftKings to win 1 unit. (Playable to -120)
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Suns vs. Mavericks Game Total Over 214.5 (-110, BetMGM)
One of the biggest differences in a game controlled by Dallas versus Phoenix has been the pace. In game 3, the pace was a dragging 89.5 but in the two games in Phoenix, it was 95.5. Dallas has been at the bottom of the league in pace all season, while Phoenix does like to run when they are given opportunities.
With all the positive offensive regression and just opportunities for change that Phoenix has, it is easy to see a path to a large bump in points. Dallas played their game but still did not shoot the ball that well, shooting 33.3% from deep.
Considering what was laid out above about trusting Phoenix to be in the driver’s seat for this game, that generally means getting into offensive sets earlier and utilizing some of their athletes in transition when the opportunities present themselves. Even if Dallas does end up winning this game, there should be an improved offensive performance from Phoenix, meaning Dallas would need to score more as well to win. Firmly putting this over in play.
Risk: 1.1 units on BetMGM to win 1 unit. (Playable to -116)
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