Can the Memphis Grizzlies build on their first home win earlier this week when they travel to Dallas to play the Mavericks tonight without Luka Doncic? Take a look at our Memphis Grizzlies vs. Dallas Mavericks predictions and best bets, featuring the latest odds, updated injury reports, and projected starting lineups for both teams!
Memphis Grizzlies Vs. Dallas Mavericks Prediction
Don’t get us wrong; we are not saying that the Memphis Grizzlies will suddenly turn their season around 180 degrees, but there have been enough improvements to keep them competitive against a team like Dallas, especially without Luka Doncic running the show.
After a beyond-brutal start to the season on the defensive end of the floor, Memphis has improved slightly, allowing opponents to shoot roughly 45% from the field and 38% from three in its past six games. Again, this is not a drastic improvement by any stretch, but it is a step in the right direction.
Bismack Biyombo and Jaren Jackson Jr. have also recently improved their presence around the rim, allowing the Grizzlies’ wings and guards to stick to their matchups tighter. As a matter of fact, Jackson logged his first six-block game of the season in their last matchup. This should allow Memphis to contest three-pointers much better than it has thus far in the 2023-24 campaign
Last season, the Mavericks were 5-11 without Luka Doncic on the floor, and in the five games that they won, the margin of victory was by an average of 7.4 points, which fares well for the Grizzlies. Further, in those games, the Mavs boasted a net rating of -5.7, as their offense took a massive hit without Luka creating for himself and others.
Ultimately, the Mavericks’ poor defense will allow Memphis to keep this game within arm’s reach; they have allowed opponents to shoot 49% from the field and 36% from deep in their past three games. They have had a morbid defensive rating of 121.1 in that stretch, which could make even an offense like the Grizzlies look respectable.
Memphis Grizzlies Vs. Dallas Mavericks Prediction: Grizzlies +7
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Memphis Grizzlies Vs. Dallas Mavericks Best Odds
The Grizzlies are seven-point road dogs against the Doncic-less Mavericks on Friday night. Dallas has Moneyline odds of -270, while Memphis is +240 to knock off the Mavs at American Airlines Center. The point total for this bout rests at 226.5 points, with the Over (-112) having slightly more favorable odds than the Under (-108.)
Memphis Grizzlies Starting Lineup
Dallas Mavericks Starting Lineup
Memphis Grizzlies Vs. Dallas Mavericks Injuries
For the first time this season, the Dallas Mavericks will be without Luka Doncic (persona), one of the leading MVP candidates and a bonafide superstar. Dallas will also miss Dante Exum (personal) and Maxi Kleber (toe.) Tim Hardaway Jr. is questionable for this bout due to a spasm in his back.
Meanwhile, Memphis continues to be plagued with suspensions and injuries. Ja Morant (suspension) will be eligible to return to action later this month but won’t be available for this game. The Grizzlies will also be without Steven Adams (knee), Brandon Clarke (Achilles), Luke Kennard (knee), Jake LaRavia (eye), and Marcus Smart (ankle.) Xavier Tillman is day-to-day with a knee injury, too.
Memphis Grizzlies Vs. Dallas Mavericks Key Matchups
Without Luka Doncic in the lineup, it will largely be up to Kyrie Irving to lead the charge offensively for the Mavericks. Check out our key matchup of the game, featuring Kyrie Irving and Derrick Rose, below!
Kyrie Irving vs. Derrick Rose
No Luka Doncic means that Kyrie Irving’s usage is bound to skyrocket. Doncic holds a usage rate of 34.8%, which is towards the top of the NBA. And rightfully so, as Luka is an MVP candidate and one of the best players in the NBA today.
However, Kyrie Irving is no stranger to being a lead option and creator for an offense, and his ball-handling, self-creation, and playmaking skills are all elite, bordering on all-time. The question is not whether or not Irving will have a big game but, rather, how big that game will be. The outcome of this game is likely riding on Irving’s shoulders, but equally so on Derrick Rose, who will be tasked with defending the crafty, slippery guard.
Rose looked terrific in his last game against Utah, posting 14 points, nine assists, and four rebounds on 64% shooting from the field; it was his first start in a Grizzlies uniform. Due to the acquisition of Marcus Smart, and the unfortunate knee soreness that kept Rose out for several games, he had not logged a start until the game against the Jazz.
Rose should serve as a solid lead guard for Memphis until the return of Ja Morant, the superstar guard who is currently suspended, but will he be able to slow down Irving?
Ultimately, Rose should continue to build on his performance against the Jazz, especially against a Mavericks defense that suffers numerous breakdowns on that end of the floor on a night basis. Expect Irving to put up huge numbers, but Rose’s IQ and effort will mitigate his overall impact in playmaking for others. Slight Advantage: Kyrie Irving.