Milwaukee Bucks vs. Dallas Mavericks Preview

On Friday, the Milwaukee Bucks (20-13 SU, 14-20 ATS) will travel to Dallas to face the Mavericks (15-15 SU, 15-15 ATS) at the American Airlines Center. Which team will come out victorious without their superstar? 

Milwaukee Bucks vs. Dallas Mavericks Betting Odds and Lines

Sportsbook: BetUS

Over/Under: 209.5

Point spread: Bucks -3.5 (-110)

Moneyline: Mavericks +145 / Bucks -165

Milwaukee Bucks vs. Dallas Mavericks Injury Report

For the Mavericks, Reggie Bullock (illness), Trey Burke (illness) Willie Cauley-Stein (illness), Luka Doncic (ankle), Josh Green (illness), Tim Hardaway Jr. (illness) and Maxi Kleber (illness) are all out. Eugene Omoruyi (Foot) and Kristaps Porzingis (foot) are questionable.

For the Bucks, Giannis Antetokounmpo (illness), Donte Divencenzo (foot), Brook Lopez (back) and Bobby Portis (illness) are all out.

Milwaukee Bucks vs. Dallas Mavericks Preview

Bucks Without Giannis

The Bucks have been up-and-down for most of their recent games. They lost Giannis to Health and Safety Protocols back on December 15th, and are 2-2 since with losses to the Pelicans and Cavaliers and wins against Rockets and Pacers at Home.

In that small sample, the Bucks are 16th in Offensive Rating, 14th in Defensive Rating and 13th in Net Rating. They’ve dropped three of their last five games overall and have the looks of a banged up and depleted team.

It’s worth keeping in mind, too, that they are slated for a game on Christmas Day and might be finding themselves in a lookahead spot on the road here. While the Mavericks are also playing on Christmas Day, they at least have been home for the week.

Mavericks Without Luka 

The Mavericks have played their last five games without Luka Doncic and have gone 3-2. They could, conceivably, be 5-0 if not for down-to-the-wire losses to the Timberwolves and Lakers.

Without Doncic, the Mavericks have played surprisingly well over the last five. In that small sample, the Mavs are 4th in Net Rating, 8th in Defensive Rating and 3rd in Offensive Rating, per NBA Advanced Stats.

While they will be banged up and short handed tonight, they’ve been getting quality minutes from Dorian Finney-Smith, Jalen Brunson and Kristaps Porzingis. This was a team that had been terrible without Doncic in the lineup earlier this season, but has been bucking that trend as of late.

Milwaukee Bucks vs. Dallas Mavericks Prediction

It’s hard to get a really good handicap in a game like this. Both teams will be without not only their star player, but also some key role men as well.

But I think this spot bodes well for the Mavericks. For the Bucks, this is a sandwiched road game off the heels of back-to-back games at home. They will have to travel back to Milwaukee after this one to play the Celtics on Christmas Day.

The Mavericks will also be playing on Christmas Day, and will have to travel to Utah, but have had the luxury of being at home for the entirety of this week. In an ugly travel spot for a short-handed Bucks team on the road, I’ll take a stab at the home team getting points.

The betting data is also interesting for this match up. While 66% of the bets are on Milwaukee, the line has shifted from 3.5 to 3 while I’ve been writing this preview. The money % is rather split here, so back the Mavericks before the line continues to drop.

All betting lines were retrieved from BetUS. Click below to claim a free bet, if you’re a new customer.  


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