Wednesday evening will be a marquee cross-conference matchup between the two exciting teams in the Cleveland Cavaliers and Dallas Mavericks at the American Airlines Center. It's the first meeting of the campaign. The tip-off is scheduled for 9 PM ET. The Cavs (17-11) are coming off a disappointing loss to the San Antonio Spurs, one of the worst teams in the West. The Mavs (14-13) meanwhile just beat the OKC Thunder on Monday behind a 38-piece from none other than Luka Doncic, who is playing like an MVP early on. Find the Cavaliers vs Mavericks prediction below.
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Cavaliers vs Mavericks Odds
|Cleveland Cavaliers||+2 (-105)||TBD||Ov 213.5 (-110)|
|Dallas Mavericks||-2 (-115)||TBD||Un 213.5 (-110)|
The Mavs are a very slim 2-point favorite for Wednesday's contest. The total is set at 213.5. Dallas has only covered 32% of their games however and owns the worst ATS record in the Association at 8-17-2. Cleveland meanwhile is 15-11-2 ATS and have covered 57.7% of the time.
In two meetings in 2021-22, it was one victory each.
Cleveland vs Dallas Preview
The Cavs currently sit in third place in the competitive Eastern Conference but they're just 5-5 in their last 10. Cleveland has definitely been streaky at times but overall, JB Bickerstaff's team is truly a dark horse if consistency can be found. The Cavaliers possess the second-best defensive rating in the NBA and the 11th-best offense. Donovan Mitchell is showing out at an MVP level, averaging 29 points, 4.7 assists, and four rebounds on 42% shooting from deep.
Darius Garland is the perfect backcourt partner, posting 21.3 points, 7.9 dimes, and 2.5 boards on a 38% clip from long range. This is one of the best duos in the league. Evan Mobley and Jarrett Allen are a big reason this group is so stout defensively, too. However, the Cavs seem to be a different team on the road, going just 5-9. At home? They're 12-2. We saw the difference on Monday in San Antonio. Cleveland shot a brutal 22% from beyond the arc and really struggled to contain a rather poor Spurs squad. a rough second quarter proved to be the difference-maker, despite the Cavs outscoring San Antonio 33-20 in the fourth. It wasn't enough.
After a run to the West Finals earlier this year, the Mavs haven't really replicated that success quite yet. Losing Jalen Brunson to free agency definitely hurt and although Luka is balling out on a nightly basis to spearhead the offense, Dallas isn't showing an ability to stop their opponents, ranking 18th in defensive rating. Plus, the Mavs are scoring just 111.9 PPG. That ranks 19th. Doncic is compiling 33.1 points, 8.8 assists, and 8.6 rebounds per night but after that, it's a big gap. Spencer Dinwiddie (16.8 PPG) and Christian Wood (16.4 PPG).
There's only one other double-digit scorer after these two and it's Tim Hardaway. The Mavs did show well two nights ago though against the Thunder. Doncic's 38 obviously led the way, but Dinwiddie and Hardaway also had 20 apiece. Dallas shot the ball well from deep which has been rare this season, draining 41% of their treys.
Jason Kidd's squad ended up spoiling Shai Gilgeous-Alexander's 42-point night. The Mavericks play three more games at home before hitting the road for four. Just like Cleveland, there's a notable difference at home, going 11-4 as opposed to 3-9 away. Thankfully, Wednesday is at the American Airlines Center. Definitely a good sign.
Cavaliers vs Mavericks Prediction
It's hard to look past the respective records home/away. That's why I've gotta take Dallas to get it done at home. With a one-possession spread, they should be able to cover here.
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