Time: 7:30 p.m. ET
Venue: American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX
Where to watch: TNT
Opening Odds at USA Sportsbooks
DraftKings: Heat -2
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Heat - Mavericks preview and analysis
Heat: won five straight, won 129-103 at Grizzlies on Saturday
Mavericks: won four of five, won 105-99 vs. Kings on Sunday
Fans of 2006 and 2011, welcome back to your time of prosperity.
The Dallas Mavericks and Miami Heat get back together yet again to remind everyone of the glory days of Dirk Nowitzki roasting the Heatles to a championship.
And I guess Dwyane Wade and LeBron James too, if you’re into that sort of thing.
The Mavericks have gotten off to a rocky start under new head coach Jason Kidd. They’re 4-2 and are even 3-0 at home in American Airlines Center, coming off a six-point win over the Sacramento Kings on Halloween.
But it hasn’t been a brand of good basketball for the Mavs. Luka Doncic has struggled to shoot the ball (42.7 percent) while averaging 22.5 points, 8.5 rebounds and 7.5 assists. It’s also been a collective problem of Dallas making shots. Tim Hardaway Jr. is only averaging 13.3 points, and Kristaps Porzingis -- who could miss his fourth straight game with back tightness -- is only at 12.7 points per game.
The 3-pointer is also a hot-and-cold weapon for Doncic yet again after going 1 of 7 against the Kings. The one he made wasn’t bad; just a 40-footer at the end of the shot clock for some much-needed insurance points.
"I'm confident in all my 3s," said Doncic. "That shot goes in, but then all my normal shots can't go in. I've got to work on those normal shots."
The slow starts tend to be a problem for Doncic, but he’s the ultimate definition of turning it on at the end of the season. Just ask the Los Angeles Clippers in the playoffs the last two years what this man can do after a full season of conditioning. But other guys are going to have to pick it up. Whether that be Jalen Brunson, Reggie Bullock or Frank Ntilikina, someone will need to make shots soon.
More specifically that max-contract big man averaging 12 points when he gets back healthy.
The Heat are playing like the team we mostly expected to be. They’ve started the season winning five of their first six based on what’s expected to carry them this year: defense.
Don’t be mistaken. Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo will be the usual 1-2 and are capable scorers enough to make this a dangerous end-to-end team. But off in the distance making nearly 40 percent of his threes and averaging 22.0 points per game is Kyle Low … Tyler Herro?
Yes, the man who made the bold claim before the season that he should be included among the likes of Doncic, Trae Young and DeAndre Ayton, Herro has come out on fire to begin the season.
Herro had 22 points off the bench on 8 of 19 shooting, and he made four of the Heat’s 21 three-pointers for an impressive 26-point win over the upstart Memphis Grizzlies.
"We've got a lot of guys who can score the ball," Butler said, as the Heat moved to a four-game win streak. "We know that. But we're also picking it up on the defensive end. … Guys are just gaining more and more confidence."
Not even back in the 2011 NBA Finals was this matchup featuring gritty defense. The offense on both sides will run into a problem, but more so the Heat’s defense is going to give Doncic problems. If Dallas can’t make shots, this should be a double-digit win for Miami on the road. Heat by 10
The Heat are 5-1 ATS to begin the season.
Miami is 20-29 ATS in its last 49 following a win of 10 points or more.
The under is 17-6 in the Mavs’ last 23 games after the total was 205 points or less the previous game.
Heat: SG Victor Oladipo (knee, out), C Bam Adebayo (knee, questionable)
Mavericks: PF Kristaps Porzingis (back, out), PF Maxi Kleber (back, questionable)
Projected starting lineup
PG: Kyle Lowry
SG: Duncan Robinson
SF: Jimmy Butler
PF: P.J. Tucker
C: Bam Adebayo
PG: Luka Doncic
SG: Tim Hardaway Jr.
SF: Dorian Finney-Smith
PF: Dwight Powell
C: Willie Cauley-Stein
Points: Jimmy Butler -- 25.3
Rebounds: Bam Adebayo -- 14.0
Assists: Kyle Lowry -- 7.2
Blocks: Kyle Lowry -- 0.4
Steals: Jimmy Butler -- 2.8
Points: Luka Doncic -- 22.5
Rebounds: Luka Doncic -- 8.5
Assists: Luka Doncic -- 7.5
Blocks: Maxi Kleber -- 1.2
Steals: Tim Hardaway Jr. -- 1.3
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