Los Angeles Clippers vs Dallas Mavericks
Clippers are looking to end their 4-game losing streak but things won't be easy for them given their recent defensive struggle as they allow 122 points in those last 4 games; also in the absence of Lou Williams, their bench (top in scoring in the league, 50ppg) has lost a lot of its strength and with Dallas' bench doing a great job (top 6 in defensive efficiency, top 10 overall) it will once again come down to their duo, Gallinari-Tobias to lead the team in scoring and keep them competitive.
DeAndre Jordan missed the shootaround (illness) and he is questionable for the Mavericks, as well as Mejri which weakens them a lot under the basket and inside the paint defensively.
Gallinari scored 21 points against the Mavericks, in their first meeting, and he caused a lot of trouble to a much smaller Barnes who is going to guard him again today. Barnes is not the best defender around and his task is even tougher given Gallinari's ability to shoot the ball from distance along with the great skill set his length as he can shoot off the dribble, fade away shots. Of course, Barnes stands no chance once Gallinari takes him to the low post and should DeAndre miss this game, the Mavericks will have trouble with Gallinari's power moves to the basket.
Gallinari averages 20.2 points in his last 5 games and despite the fact that he has suffered a lot with injuries, he is in the best shape since his return, and more importantly, he is not afraid to use his strength to attack the basket and take hits along the way. All in all, he has more freedom in the offense with the absence of Lou Williams who was among their 'closers' and he should, along with Tobias, lead the team in scoring if they are about to stop the bleeding.
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Los Angeles Clippers vs Dallas Mavericks prediction
|Gallinari - Over 19.5 Points||Pinnacle||1.86||8||32 WON (+6.88 units)|