Dallas Mavericks vs Boston Celtics Preview 3/13/2022

Glenn James/NBAE via Getty Images

Dallas Mavericks vs Boston Celtics Preview 3/13/2022

NBA Game Previews

Dallas Mavericks vs Boston Celtics Preview 3/13/2022

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Glenn James/NBAE via Getty Images

The Dallas Mavericks are taking on the Boston Celtics this afternoon at 3:30 p.m. EST. The Dallas Mavericks enter this road contest at 41-26, placing them at fifth in the Western Conference. Dallas is currently one of the hottest teams in basketball, though. They’re 8-2 in their last ten games, and they head into Boston fresh off a convincing 13-point win in Houston. Luka Doncic is averaging 31.3 PPG since the All-Star break, and newly acquired guard Spencer Dinwiddie has looked fantastic in his first ten games for the Mavs, averaging 17.5 PPG on a career-high 64% true shooting percentage.

As for Boston, they’re currently fifth in the Eastern Conference at 41-27. Just like Dallas, the Celtics are one of the league’s hottest teams. Behind lockdown defense, awesome rebounding, great ball-movement, and MVP caliber play from star Jayson Tatum recently, Boston is on a roll. They’re 8-2 in their last ten games while currently riding a five-game winning streak. Also worth noting that the Celtics will be retiring Kevin Garnett’s number after today’s game. 

Dallas won the first and only matchup between the teams back on Nov. 5. Doncic’s game-winner sealed the 107-104 victory. However, a lot has changed since then. Both teams have made new acquisitions, healed from some injuries, and ultimately, both teams are playing a lot better now than they were back in November. Should make for an exciting game today at the TD Garden.

How Dallas can win:

Last time out against Boston, the Mavericks managed to hold them to just 36 rebounds. It will be tough to repeat such a performance, but Dallas should look to minimize Boston’s impact on the board. This Celtics team has become a really nice rebounding team over this hot stretch, so minimizing their impact on the glass will be vital. 

Offensively, the Mavericks will obviously need some Luka-magic, but it’s going to take more than a one-man wrecking crew to take down this Celtics defense. On-ball creators like Dinwiddie and Jalen Brunson will need to put some pressure on the Boston defense as well. Also, keep an eye out for Tim Hardaway Jr. and Davis Bertans. Neither are the definition of consistency, but it would be huge for Dallas if one of them could get hot from behind the arc tonight. One of the best ways to beat this Celtics team is simply a hot shooting night

How Boston Can Win:

Defensively, the number one priority will obviously be Luka Doncic. He’s already one of the league’s best players, and he’s already hit multiple game-winners against the Celtics in his short career. Shutting Doncic down is impossible, but slowing him down isn’t. Making life tough for him and constant communication on ball-screens will be key. Also, don’t let him live at the free-throw line.

Offensively, the Celtics really should stick to what’s been working lately. First of all, let Tatum cook. He’s been on fire lately. If it’s not his night, pass the torch over to Jaylen Brown. However, it does go even deeper than that. Boston has been moving the ball extremely well as of late. When they’re moving the ball at this level, everything seems to be clicking.

The Spread & Moneyline via FanDuel

Spread: DAL (+7.5) | BOS (-7.5)

Moneyline: DAL (+240) | BOS (-290)

 

Final Score Prediction: Celtics 108, Mavericks 104

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