The Milwaukee Bucks (18-6) travel to face the Dallas Mavericks (13-11) on Friday, with two of the best scorers in the NBA squaring off. Luka Dončić leads the NBA in points per game (32.9), with Giannis Antetokounmpo right behind him (32.1). Both teams are also on three-game winning streaks.
On Wednesday, the Bucks beat the Sacramento Kings 126-113. The offense is finally starting to be a little more dominant. The Mavericks held on against the Denver Nuggets on Tuesday, winning 116-115, nearly letting the game slip away in the fourth quarter.
Bucks Separating Themselves
Despite the Bucks having the second-most wins in the NBA, they are not on top of the Eastern Conference, currently 2.5 games behind the Boston Celtics. But, they are separating themselves from the rest of the conference, holding a two-game lead over third place.
Much of that has to do with the level that Antetokounmpo is playing at on both ends of the court. There is a good chance he could once again win MVP and DPOY, just like in 2020. He also has had eight straight games with 30 or more points.
Throughout most of the season, the Bucks have won through their defense, playing low-scoring games and having just enough offense to win. It has worked because of how good the defense has been, ranking third in points allowed and second in defensive rating.
However, over the last four games, the Bucks have two games over 125 points, with four all season, as Khris Middleton made his return during that time. While he hasn’t had a big game over his three starts, the threat of him is opening up the Bucks’ offense. He is already averaging six assists per game, and his shooting stroke will eventually return to normal.
Scoop on Free Play from the Locker Room
Mavericks Finding Support For Dončić
It has all been on Dončić offensively, which makes sense since he could arguably be the best offensive player in the NBA. He leads the NBA in points per game and is fourth in assists, 8.7. He can do anything from running a pick-and-roll to dice up an opponent’s defense, going isolation and hitting a step-back three, or a cross-court pass that will catch just about everyone off guard.
The issue has been that if Dončić had an off night or the Mavericks’ defense couldn’t string together stops, there was no way they would win. Tim Hardaway Jr. has started to change that, averaging 24.4 points over his last five games, with four 20-point games. He is shooting 56% from three, which is not sustainable, but it is a massive improvement from a crucial player on the roster who is averaging 13.3 points per game.
Against the Nuggets, Hardaway led the team in scoring with 29, doing that for the second time, and it was only the fifth time this season it wasn’t Dončić. Dorian Finney-Smith also added 19 points and a go-ahead three-pointer, as he has struggled offensively in this type of game.
Bucks vs Mavericks Game Injuries
Bucks vs Mavericks Head-to-Head
Over the last two seasons, the Bucks and Mavericks have split their four games, with the home team winning every time. That stayed true as the Bucks beat the Mavericks 124-115, behind Antetokounmpo’s 30 points, nearly two weeks ago.
Bucks vs Mavericks Game Information
- Game: Bucks (18-6) vs Mavericks (13-11)
- Location: American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX
- Day/Time: Friday, December 9th, 10:00 p.m. EST
- Bucks vs Mavericks Live Stream: NBA Game Pass
Bucks vs Mavericks Betting Lines
Bucks vs Mavericks Picks & Prediction
While a three-game winning streak isn’t that long, the Bucks and Mavericks will have theirs on the line in this game. The game will feature two of the best players in the league, which can always lead to an exciting game.
The Mavericks will have the upper hand at home, going 10-3 in Dallas, along with their role players finally offering support for Dončić. It should still be a close game featuring two better teams in the NBA.
The Dallas Mavericks are listed at -105 in our Vegas NBA lines. This means that if you wager $100 on the Mavericks, you have a chance to win $95. The Milwaukee Bucks is -115, offering a chance to win $87 on a $100 wager.
The implied probability attached to the betting lines gives the Dallas Mavericks a 51.22% chance to win, with the Milwaukee Bucks at 53.49%.
Bucks vs Mavericks Trends
Bucks vs Mavericks Edge
Bucks vs Mavericks Results
Bucks vs Mavericks Game Summary
Mavericks vs Bucks Previous Game (Nov. 27, 2022)
After a hard-fought loss against the Toronto Raptors, the Dallas Mavericks visit the Milwaukee Bucks. The NBA betting odds favor the Bucks by six as Milwaukee, a team that is 10-2 at home, looks to extend Dallas’s road woes. Dallas dropped to 1-6 as a visitor and continues to be miserable on the online sports betting lines with an NBA-worst 4-13-1 record against the spread (ATS).
It’s hard to trust the Mavericks as they can’t cover anything. However, Dallas is 1-1 ATS as a road underdog and in that one loss against Boston, they covered with the adjusted spread. Doncic plays well against Milwaukee averaging a double-double: 26.8 points and 11.3 assists. Dallas is 6-1 when Doncic has 10 assists or more this season. Dallas will test Milwaukee.