2022 NBA Picks: Has Luka Doncic Transformed Dallas Mavericks into NBA Finals Threats?

Eric Uribe
By , Updated on: Sep 4, 2022 08:00 PM
2022 NBA Picks: Has Luka Doncic Transformed Dallas Mavericks into NBA Finals Threats?

Nothing gets the online NBA betting juices floating quite like a fully loaded regular-season slate in which pretty much every team is in action. And as luck would have it, that's just what The Association has in store for us on Wednesday, March 9.

Twenty-four of the league's 30 teams are in action this hump day, giving us plenty of betting options from which to choose. The highlight of our latest NBA picks will be the Dallas Mavericks vs. New York Knicks matchup since Luka Doncic suddenly has the former looking like they should have some of the most enticing betting odds for the 2022 NBA Finals

Beyond that, we will also have our best NBA bets for the four most other attractive games on this 12-contest schedule. But let us first have a gander at the latest NBA betting odds for all of Wednesday's action:

Boston Celtics-320+260Charlotte Hornets
Chicago Bulls-260+215Detroit Pistons
Milwaukee Bucks-240+198Atlanta Hawks
Miami Heat-340+275Phoenix Suns
Minnesota Timberwolves-1500+870Oklahoma City Thunder
Los Angeles Lakers-174+146Houston Rockets
New Orleans Pelicans-335+270Orlando Magic
Toronto Raptors-112-104San Antonio Spurs
Dallas Mavericks-320+260New York Knicks
Denver Nuggets-198+166Sacramento Kings
Utah Jazz-2200+1100Portland Trail Blazers
LA Clippers-196+164Washington Wizards

Make sure you're double-checking all NBA odds prior to settling on any NBA picks. These NBA betting lines shouldn't move too much, but they are subject to shift right up until the opening tip.

If you haven't already, we also suggest going through our reviews of the top online sportsbooks before placing your wagers. These in-depth guides have all the information you need to pluck out and use the best NBA betting sites in 2022.

Are the Dallas Mavericks 2022 NBA Finals Threats?

It initially looked like the Mavericks would spend this regular season as one of the largest disappointments. They've instead turned into one of the biggest surprises.

Head coach Jason Kidd has installed a top-tier defense that does a nice job gobbling up low-hanging fruit by grabbing rebounds, getting back in transition and limiting fouls. The Mavs have been further buoyed by the additions of Spencer Dinwiddie (off-the-dribble creativity and rim pressure) and Davis Bertans (functional shooting) since the trade deadline.

Oh, and of course, Dallas still has Luka Doncic, who is currently shooting the lights out from every area of the floor and hovering around the fringes of the MVP discussion. Given how well the Mavs have performed over the past six weeks, positioning themselves within striking distance of a top-three playoff seed, many are wondering whether they're now 2022 NBA Finals threats.

For us, personally, it's tough to go that far. Dallas' offense can still be too vanilla for stretches. But they have at least played their way into "We'll beat up on clearly inferior teams" territory. And that means you should expect them to pick apart the Knicks on Wednesday night.

OSB Prediction: Dallas Mavericks (-320)

Dallas Mavericks To beat the New York Knicks

Celtics will Stay Hot vs. Hornets

The Boston Celtics have turned in the league's best defense for approximately the past two months. More recently, thanks to Jayson Tatum, they've partnered that defense with an ascending offense.

Add it all up, and you get a team that basically ranks in the top 10 efficiency on both sides of the ball. And that suggests the Celtics are officially borderline elite—which is terrible news for a Charlotte Hornets team currently suffering through a major downswing.

OSB Prediction: Boston Celtics (-320)

Boston Celtics To beat the Charlotte Hornets

Bucks Take Advantage of Struggling Hawks

People spent much of the weeks heading into the All-Star break worrying about the Milwaukee Bucks' lack of depth and declining defense. We were not among them. And that patience is paying off.

Milwaukee continues to obliterate opponents when Giannis Antetokounmpo, Jrue Holiday, and Khris Middleton all share the floor, and their pickups of Serge Ibaka, Jevon Carter, and DeAndre' Bembry have given them more optionality throughout their rotation. 

The Bucks are also playing the Atlanta Hawks at the right time. The latter is back to stinking it up on defense, so they should be catnip for Milwaukee to devour.

OSB Prediction: Milwaukee Bucks (-240)

Milwaukee Bucks To beat the Atlanta Hawks

Lakers Get Second Straight Win vs. Rockets

Betting on the Los Angeles Lakers has been a fragile existence this season. They are shallow, Anthony Davis is perpetually banged up, and Russell Westbrook has proven to be a terrible fit. 

Heading into Wednesday night's matchup with the Houston Rockets, the Lakers have so far put up one of the NBA's worst records against the spread, at 27-37. But we're not concerning ourselves with the spread. LeBron James is playing too well for us to go that route, and more than that, the Lakers actually have a 55-plus winning percentage when they enter as the moneyline favorite as they do here.

OSB Prediction: Los Angeles Lakers (-174)

Los Angeles Lakers To beat the Houston Rockets

Nuggets Get Feel-Good Victory Over Kings

Every Denver Nuggets game these days feels like a slog. There's no such thing as an easy victory while they continue to operate without Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr.

On the bright side, they have the MVP favorite in Nikola Jokic. And on the even brighter side, they get to face a Sacramento Kings team that has been playing like one of the three worst teams in the league since the trade deadline.

OSB Prediction: Denver Nuggets (-198)

Denver Nuggets To beat the Sacramento Kings

Take a look at this list of the top online sportsbooks so you can decide which one to use for all of your NBA betting:

Meet the author

Eric Uribe

Eric has been passionate about sports since he was 10 years old. He brings over 10 years of sports journalism experience to his expert coverage of sports betting. Hailing from the US, Eric leverages his diverse expertise covering sports at all levels – from high schoo...

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