Dallas Mavericks vs. Phoenix Suns / NBA – Although it is planned that Dallas and the Suns meet four times this season they still haven’t faced each other and this is going to be first of their four duels. Both teams are, alongside the Wolves, the worst in the Western Conference as they won just 11 games. Dallas is in a bit better shape, especially as recovered Dirk Nowitzki has joined the team. Begins: 06.01.2017 – 02:30 CET
Dallas won five out of last 10 games and in that way has moved from the very bottom of Western Conference standings. It is fact that Dallas has the same number of wins as the Suns and Wolves (11) but they lost one game fewer than the Suns (24). Return of Dirk Nowitzki in the team, who skipped almost two months of the season, has obviously stabilise the team, although his results are not detrimental for the Mavs anymore but still carries significant weight, which is undisputed. Out of 10 so far played game Dirk averaged 11.7 points and 5.5 rebounds, but his presence on the court “forces” somehow his co-players to give their maximum.
The Mavs are solid at home, given they are near the bottom of Western Conference. They won 7 games and lost 9, while their guests now are team that outside its arena has won just 4 games out of 20 played. Best player is newly arrived Barnes, who came from the Warriros, and he averages 20.6 points and 5.6 rebounds, while Matthews is doing well as shooting guard (15.7 points). Too bad that veteran Baree is injured, who played in just 11 games this season and was each time significant player in the Mavs attack. It is interesting that Dallas starts games without classic centre and instead Nowitzki covers that position, while Bogut and Mejri stay on the bench, who are the only true fives in the Mavs’ team.
Probable lineups Dallas Mavericks: Williams, Matthews, Finney-Smith, Barnes, Nowitzki
At the moment Phoenix is the weakest team in the Western Conference. Their score is 11 wins and 25 defeats, while out of last 10 games they won just three. Realistically, having next-to-last defence in the league and the least number of assists cannot take you much further. However, prior to this game they won Miami 99-90. In that game Booker was the Suns’ best player with 27 points, while next to him was centre Chandler who had 20 rebounds. Young rookie Chriss had 18 points and 6 rebounds and is still one of rare positive stories in the Suns this season. Victory over Miami was the first against this team since November 2009, or in other words 12 consecutive defeats.
Suns’ problem is injury of guard Knight, although three is long running rumour that he should be traded. However, story about departure of power forward Tucker for the Knicks is more live as the New York coach Jeff Hornacek wants to reinforce defence of his team right with this player. The Suns are more efficient that Dallas but their defence is dreadful, as we have said before, so they receive almost 12 points more than the Mavs on average this season.
Probable lineups Phoenix Suns: Bledsoe, Booker, Chriss, Warren, Chandler
Dallas Mavericks – Phoenix Suns PICK
With Nowitzki the Mavs seems far more serious team and we believe that the things will slowly move toward the better. On the other hand the Suns seem like a broken army which only occasionally wins a game. Because of that we would play on Dallas victory, which also plays at home where is far better than the Suns away.
Tip: Dallas -5,5 points
Odds: 1.91 at unibet (down to 1.83 can be played)