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Struggling Mavs Face Tough Test In Top-Seeded Bucks

Giannis Antetokounmpo preparing to shoot a basketball

The Milwaukee Bucks snapped a two-game losing streak with a 130-116 win over the Miami Heat on Thursday night. The Bucks will try to pick up a second straight win this Saturday night in an interesting test against the Dallas Mavericks.

Milwaukee Bucks vs Dallas Mavericks
  • Date/Time: August 8, 2020, 8:30 p.m. ET
  • Stadium: The Arena (WWOS)
  • TV Coverage: ESPN
  • Opening Odds: Milwaukee -5.5 | O/U 232 (Line History)
  • Bucks vs Mavericks (Matchup Report)

Opening Odds Analysis

Milwaukee opened this game against the Mavericks as a 5.5-point favorite. The Bucks are 3-1 SU and 2-2 ATS in their last four games against Dallas since going just 1-9 SU and 1-8-1 ATS in their previous 10 games against the Mavericks.

Milwaukee News & Notes

The Bucks were in the midst of a 1-4 SU and ATS slump when the NBA was postponed back in March. Milwaukee came out of the long layoff with a 1-2 SU and ATS record before Thursday’s win and cover. Since returning to action, the Bucks defense has allowed a whopping 116.75 points per game through the team’s first four games.

Milwaukee has already locked up the top seed in the Eastern Conference and was 52-8 SU and 35-25 ATS through the first 60 games of the 2019-20 NBA season. The Bucks probably won’t have any trouble hitting the on switch for the postseason, but it has been a long while since this team has played any meaningful games; it will be interesting to see how seriously they take these next two games against Dallas and Toronto.

Dallas News & Notes

Dallas is an ugly 1-3 SU and 0-4 ATS in its first four games in the NBA bubble as the defense has allowed an abysmal 126.5 points per game over that stretch. But despite the underwhelming record, Luka Doncic is still must-see TV; the 21-year-old has averaged 32.75 points, 9.75 assists, and 11 rebounds per game in his first four games back on the court.

While the Bucks can afford to control minutes and rest players with the top seed in the Eastern Conference already locked up, the Mavericks still have plenty of incentive to play hard over their last four games. If Dallas can’t improve on its current spot as the Western Conference’s seventh seed, a brutal first-round series against the No. 2 seed Los Angeles Clippers awaits.

Betting Pick: Dallas +5.5

Coming off of a big win against Miami and looking ahead to a showdown against the Toronto Raptors on Monday, this could be a letdown spot for the Bucks. Expect fireworks to fly on offense and for the Mavericks to eventually produce enough points to cover the spread.

Shark Bites
  • Dallas is 1-3 SU and 0-4 ATS since the NBA restart.
  • Doncic is averaging nearly a triple-double in the NBA bubble.
  • The OVER is 3-1 in Milwaukee’s last four games.