|-3.5 MIA (-110) @ Fanduel|
My 10* Game of the Week is on the Mia Heat at 8:10 ET.
The Miami Heat shocked pretty much all with their run to the NBA Finals last season but the team's "encore performance" has been a struggle. The Dallas Mavericks snapped a three-year playoff drought by going 43-32 last season and led by Doncic, had high hopes for the 2020-21 season. As the season is in its final two weeks, both teams will at least qualify for the NBA's new "Play-In" tournament (No. 7-10 seeds) but neither team wants that!
Dallas is currently 36-28 (No. 6 seed) and while it is just a half-game back of the No. 5 seed (LA Lakers), it is also just a half-game up on the No. 7 seed (Portland). ONE of those three teams will be regulated to "play-in" status. Miami is 35-30 (No. 6 seed) but just a half-game up on the No. 7 seed (Boston). Looking at the glass being "half full," Miami is also just two games back of the No. 4 seed (NY Knicks). If the Heat could catch and pass the Knicks, they could secure the home court edge in a first round series.
Doncic (28.6-8.0-8.9) has been great all season but Porzingis (20.2 & 9.1) has missed FIVE of the last six games (he's missed a game on the season) and is listed as doubtful for Tuesday. Guard Tim Hardaway Jr. (16.0) also sat out Sunday with an ankle injury but is expected to play against the Heat. Powell has replaced Porzingis and he' NOT up to the task and while Dallas gets 'teased' every once in a while by Cauley-Stein's play, he's just NOT reliable. "It's eight games left," Dallas head coach Rick Carlisle said. "They're all very meaningful. Hopefully we'll get Tim back. We'll see where KP is and we'll head to Miami and look to play better." That just about sums it up.
Miami's dealing with some injury issues as well, as Victor Oladipo (right knee) will miss his 14th consecutive game and shooting guard Tyler Herro (14.9-4.9-3.4 will miss his sixth in a row with a foot injury. However, Miami's current starting-five looks pretty good. Butler (21.3-7.0-7.2) and Ariza (8.9 & 4.6 in his 24 games with the Heat) start up front with center Adebayo (19.1-9.1-5.3). Nunn (14.3) and Robinson (13.0) are the starting guards, with veteran Dragic (13.0 & 4.5 APG) coming off the bench.
Miami's won SEVEN of its last 10 and note that Tuesday's game is the first meeting between the Mavs and Heat since Dallas ended a SIX-game losing streak in the series back on Jan 1 with a 93-83 win, In that contest, Doncic scored 27 points with 15 rebounds and seven assists, while Butler missed all SIX of his shots and scored just two points. DON'T see that happening here. Miami has regained its defensive 'mojo' (now ranked 4th in points allowed per game) and I'm "all over" the Heat in this one.
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Winning Starts Here