On Friday night, the Philadelphia 76ers play host to the Dallas Mavericks. Despite being one of just three Eastern Conference teams with at least 20 wins, the Sixers enter this game in fifth place at 20-9, while the Mavs enter the game at 18-9, which is good for fifth place in the Western Conference. The teams are both 7-3 in their last ten games, though the Sixers have lost consecutive games and Dallas’ three losses have come over their past five games.
About a week ago, this game was setting up to be a showdown between darkhorse MVP candidate Luka Doncic and a Sixers team that was at that point undefeated at home. Fast forward to today and Doncic is out for at least a couple of weeks with a right ankle sprain and the Sixers have lost their undefeated streak at home. This is a perfect opportunity for a bounce back game for Philadelphia, as Dallas is a vastly weakened team without their star point guard. Doncic had begun to mount a case for being in the MVP conversation, including a streak of 20 consecutive games with at least 20 points, five rebounds, and five assists. Kristaps Porzingis has strung together three straight games with at least 20 points and 10 rebounds, a first in his career.
With that, let’s get into our Sixers-Mavs betting preview.
Sixers vs. Mavs Odds
Here’s the line for the Sixers and Mavs at DraftKings Sportsbook PA:
- Spread: Sixers -8, Mavs +8
- Moneyline: Sixers -375 Mavs +300
- Total: 213
Bets We Like With a Sixers Win
Joel Embiid Over 24.5 Points and Sixers Win (+150, FOX Bet)
FiveThirtyEight gives the Sixers an 82% chance of winning with a -9.5 point line. The Sixers had rattled off fourteen consecutive wins to start their season at Wells Fargo Center. They should be motivated to avenge their first home loss, a 108-104 disaster against the Miami Heat. This should be a game where Joel Embiid can feast, especially if Al Horford can help get Kristaps Porzingis mentally and physically checked out of the game early.
Bets We Like With a Mavs Win
Kristaps Porzingis Over 19.5 Points and Mavs Win (+500, FOX Bet)
If, for whatever reason, you think the Mavs will win this game -despite FiveThirtyEight giving them just an 18% chance of winning- it’s going to come down to Kristaps Porzingis putting up a monster point total. He’s scored 20+ points in four straight games after failing to do so in his previous seven.
Bets We Like Independent of Outcome
Sixers Win the First Quarter -2.5 (-117, DraftKings)
The Sixers have been wildly successful at home this season and much of that is directly attributable to excellent starts. In 13 of their last 14 night games at Wells Fargo Center, the Sixers have made the most of homecourt advantage by winning the first quarter. With this Dallas Mavericks team on the ropes, I expect the Sixers to do it once again. If you want to take the spread out of it, you can get the Sixers to win the quarter at -215.
Sixers Win the First and Second Quarters (+130, FOX Bet)
We’ve established why the Sixers are a good bet to win the first quarter. Without their floor general, we’ll likely see Kristaps Porzingis force the issue in the first half, which he did in Wednesday’s loss to the Boston Celtics. Forcing the ball to Porzingis early and often plays right into the Sixers’ hands as some combination of Joel Embiid, Al Hoford, and Tobias Harris will provide a rotating tough matchup. Get better value and take the Sixers to win the first two quarters.
Sixers vs. Mavs Prediction
Pick: Sixers win the first and second quarters as well as the game.