Dallas vs. Toronto - December 14, 2012 - 7:00 PM
Pick: Your pick will be graded at williamhill @ 5.5 -110 Toronto
Expert: Ben Burns
Evaluation: Win (900) - Final Score DAL 74 at TOR 95
Reason For Pick:
I'm playing on the TORONTO RAPTORS. I like how this one sets up for the home team.
The Mavericks had last night off. However, they were off a double-OT heartbreaker at Boston the previous night, a game that may still have some lingering effects.
The Mavs, who play a "revenge" game at Minnesota, are also playing their 10th consecutive game, which was in a different city from their previous game.
That stretch started with a blowout home loss vs. LA. The Mavs then traveled to Philly and then Chicago, before returning home. That was only for a single game though and they were right back on the road for games at LA, Phoenix and Houston. Then, it was back home - but again only for one game. That was followed by their current road trip.
I mentioned that the Mavs play at Minnesota tomorrow. Considering that the T-Wolves upset them at Dallas earlier, that could be some cause for looking ahead. Either way, its not a situation in which the Mavs have fared well. Indeed, they're a dismal 5-15 SU/ATS the last 20 times that the played the front end of a back-to-back spot.
That includes an 0-4 SU (1-3 ATS) record in that situation, since the beginning of November. Its also worth noting that the Mavs are a poor 6-10 ATS the last 16 times that they were listed as road favorites in the 3.5 to 6 range.
Speaking of "revenge," the Raptors come in looking for some payback, after losing a close one at Dallas last month. The Mavs won that game but only by five points, while listed as 7 point favorites.
True, the Raptors are without Bargnani and Lowry, arguably their two most talented players. However, Bargnani hasn't been as good this year and they've gotten accustomed to playing without him. They've also still got a very capable point guard in Jose Calderon, which helps to make up for Lowry's absence.
The Raptors, who have tomorrow off, couldn't break though with a win over Brooklyn on Wednesday. However, that was the first game back off a long road trip - which can be tough - and they did manage to earn the cover.
Including the cover at Dallas, they're 12-6-3 ATS against Southwest division teams the past few seasons. I expect AT LEAST another cover here. *9 best bet