Mavericks vs Trail Blazers Picks and Predictions: Back Doncic & Co. in Portland

Luka Doncic has been on absolute fire lately and should give Portland some trouble when Dallas pays a visit tonight. Read why the wrong team may be favored by checking out our Mavericks vs. Trail Blazers betting picks.

Last Updated: Jan 14, 2023 5:04 PM ET Read Time: 4 min
Luka Doncic Dallas Mavericks NBA
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

The new year has been kind to the Portland Trail Blazers, but they have not capitalized on an easier schedule, winning just once since 2023 commenced.

The Dallas Mavericks should be able to take advantage of the stumbling Blazers tonight, led by superstar point guard Luka Doncic.

Find out more in our free NBA picks and predictions for Mavericks vs. Blazers on January 14.

Mavericks vs Trail Blazers best odds

Mavericks vs Trail Blazers picks and predictions

The instinct here was to find a Luka Doncic angle. The Mavericks' All-Star has been on a heater for weeks now, scoring fewer than 32 points only once since December 23. His point total for tonight is a mere 34.5 points, which is a number he has cleared in seven of his last 10 games.

Doncic has also racked up rebounds and assists throughout the stretch. Combine his points, rebounds, and assists, and Doncic has eclipsed 54 PRA in eight of his last 10 games.

The Over/Under for that prop tonight? 53.5.

Instinct says tonight’s props are deflated because the Blazers have avoided letting anyone go nuclear against them of late. Only one player has broken 30 points against Portland in the last six games, which came from Timberwolves forward Anthony Edwards. No one has put together an all-around dominant performance, either. Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton had 15 points, 12 assists, and four rebounds against the Blazers, but that is about the extent of any thorough stat line.

As surprising as this may seem, individual showings may be diminished against Portland because the Blazers' defense is all-around decent. Since January 1, Portland boasts the No. 6 defensive rating in the league, per StatMuse

Yet, the Blazers keep losing, and an active five-game losing streak has not come against the NBA’s best. The Cavaliers and the Pacers both have winning records, so falling to them may be excusable, but stumbling against the Timberwolves, the Raptors, and the Magic? That is why Portland finds itself on the outside looking in on the Western Conference playoff race. Win those three games, and the Blazers would be the No. 6 seed right now.

All that said, Portland still finds themselves favored tonight.

The best guess as to why is that Doncic played nearly 53 minutes in Dallas’ double-overtime win against the Lakers on Thursday, but that may be a bookmakers’ overreaction. He has had a full 48 hours to recover, a stretch that did not include a time zone change and not much travel staying on the West Coast.

Slowing down a hot streak like Luka's may still mean the MVP candidate still puts up his regular godly numbers. That kind of stat line will be unlike anything Portland has seen lately.

The Blazers have been losing anyway. Let’s assume that continues and enjoy taking Doncic and the Mavs tonight. 

My best bet: Mavericks moneyline (+105 at BetMGM)

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Mavericks vs Trail Blazers spread analysis

This spread bounced around a bit this morning. On Friday evening, the Mavericks were mere 1.5-point underdogs. The earliest books that posted lines on Friday afternoon even considered making this game a pick’em. It climbed as high as +3 early in the morning before returning to a stable +1.5.

There may have been some hasty speculation that some Dallas mainstays would not play after that tough win in Los Angeles, but there is no evidence of such, with the possible exception of an ankle injury slowing Christian Wood.

Again, Vegas appears set on assuming that win will cost the Mavericks now, but that has never been how Doncic operates.

Mavericks vs Trail Blazers Over/Under analysis

The total has steadily fallen. It opened at 228.5 late on Friday before ticking consistently downward to 224.5 or even 224.0 at some books.

Four of Dallas’ last six games have gone Under its total, while eight of Portland’s last 10 contests have also hit their Unders.

As mentioned earlier, the Blazers’ defense may be underrated, and the Portland offensive rating is No. 28 in the league since Jan. 1. That is the secret to this run of Unders.

Mavericks vs Trail Blazers betting trend to know

The Blazers are 0-5 ATS in their last five games, including losing two games outright as favorites and another two as one-point underdogs. Find more NBA betting trends for Mavericks vs. Trail Blazers.

Mavericks vs Trail Blazers game info

Location: Moda Center, Portland, OR
Date: Saturday, January 14, 2023
Tip-off: 10:00 p.m. ET
TV: ROOT Sports, Bally Sports Dallas

Mavericks vs Trail Blazers key injuries

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