The Dallas Mavericks and the Phoenix Suns meet on Wednesday at Talking Stick Resort Arena. These two teams look to improve dramatically in 2018-19. Both teams have promising young talent.
TV: 10:30 p.m. ET, ESPN, FS Southwest (Dallas), FS Arizona (Phoenix)
Odds: The Suns opened as -1.5-point favorites versus the Mavericks. Now the Mavericks are favored by 1-point. The game’s total is still at 214.5.
Both teams have highly touted rookies making their NBA debuts on Wednesday. Phoenix center Deandre Ayton is expected to be an impact player after being the top pick of the draft.
The 7-foot-1 Ayton is viewed as the type of player who can turn around a struggling franchise’s fortunes quickly.
Dallas is high on guard Luka Doncic. the third overall pick who was acquired from Atlanta in a draft-night trade. The Mavericks are coming off their worst season since going 20-62 in 1997-98.
Doncic was the EuroLeague MVP last season. He is one of the building pieces expected to help forge a turnaround.
Mavericks Will Improve as Season Progresses
Small forward Harrison Barnes will miss the opener due to a hamstring injury. The team’s leading scorer (18.9 average) from last season should be back by early next week.
Franchise legend Dirk Nowitzki will miss the opener. He could be sidelined the rest of the month as he continues his recovery from left ankle surgery in April.
The 40-year-old Nowitzki is the sixth-leading scorer in NBA history with 31,187 points but he will be a reserve once he is healthy.
New center DeAndre Jordan posted more than 40 double-doubles in each of the past five seasons.
The Mavericks were 24-58 last season.
Suns Look for Quick Turnaround
Standout shooting guard Devin Booker has been cleared to play in the opener. He has been sidelined the past five weeks due to undergoing surgery on his broken right hand.
“Devin is doing great,” first-year Phoenix coach Igor Kokoskov told reporters while revealing Booker was ready.
Booker averaged 24.9 points last season while being limited to 54 games due to injury. He received a five-year, $158 million extension during the offseason.
The Suns went 3-0 against the Mavericks last season and won the past five meetings.
Phoenix agreed on a one-year deal with SG Jamal Crawford. The 18-year veteran who ranks fifth in NBA history with 2,153 3-point baskets.
PREDICTION: Mavericks 105, Suns 101
NBA Betting Odds & Trends
|Mavs are 2-4 ATS in its last 6 games|
|Dallas is 1-7 SU in its last 8 games|
|The total has gone OVER in 4 of Dallas’s last 5 games|
|Dallas is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games on the road|
|Dallas is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games on the road|
|The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Dallas’s last 6 games on the road|
|Dallas is 0-5 ATS in its last 5 games when playing Phoenix|
|Dallas is 0-5 SU in its last 5 games when playing Phoenix|
|The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Dallas’s last 9 games when playing Phoenix|
|Dallas is 2-4 ATS in its last 6 games when playing on the road against Phoenix|
|Dallas is 2-4 SU in its last 6 games when playing on the road against Phoenix|
|The total has gone OVER in 7 of Dallas’s last 9 games when playing on the road against Phoenix|
|Suns are 4-2 ATS in its last 6 games|
|Phoenix is 2-17 SU in its last 19 games|
|The total has gone OVER in 4 of Phoenix’s last 5 games|
|Phoenix is 2-7 ATS in its last 9 games at home|
|Phoenix is 1-14 SU in its last 15 games at home|
|The total has gone OVER in 10 of Phoenix’s last 15 games at home|
|The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Phoenix’s last 6 games at home|
|Phoenix is 5-0 ATS in its last 5 games when playing Dallas|
|Phoenix is 5-0 SU in its last 5 games when playing Dallas|
|The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Phoenix’s last 9 games when playing Dallas|
|Phoenix is 4-2 ATS in its last 6 games when playing at home against Dallas|
|Phoenix is 4-2 SU in its last 6 games when playing at home against Dallas|
|The total has gone OVER in 7 of Phoenix’s last 9 games when playing at home against Dallas|
Dallas home to Minnesota Saturday, October 20
Phoenix at Denver Saturday, October 20
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