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Houston Rockets vs. Dallas Mavericks - 10/7/14 NBA Preseason Pick, Odds, Prediction

Dallas Mavericks vs. Houston Rockets

NBA Basketball: Tuesday, October 7, 2014 at 8:30 pm (American Airlines Center)

The Line: See the Latest Odds

TV: CSN Houston, KTXA

The Houston Rockets and Dallas Mavericks will begin their 2014 preseason with a matchup at the American Airlines Center.

The Houston Rockets tweaked their lineup a bit with the additions of Trevor Ariza and Jason Terry. While the additions should pay off, the Rockets lost Jeremy Lin and Chandler Parsons, both who were key contributors to last year’s success. Overall, the Houston Rockets are an experienced and talented basketball team that really doesn’t have a ton of questions entering the upcoming season. The Rockets will likely use this preseason to improve their defense that ranked 23rd in the NBA and find a little bit of depth that could pay off in a playoff run. The Rockets are high on rookie shooting guard Nick Johnson, who should see a good portion of the preseason in hopes of earning some quality minutes when it matters most.

Houston Rockets vs. Dallas Mavericks - 10/7/14 NBA Preseason Pick, Odds, Prediction

USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Mavericks also didn’t settle on their current roster, as they added Jameer Nelson, Raymond Felton, Tyson Chandler and of course, Chandler Parsons. Having Parsons leave for an in-state rival is enough to make you watch this matchup even if it is a preseason game. The Mavericks have to focus on defense and rebounding in these preseason games, as they were towards the bottom in both categories. The Mavs can also only hope their point guard depth ends up paying off, as it can only improve one of the best passing teams in the league a season ago. Dirk Nowitzki will not play in this matchup due to a hip injury but it’s nothing serious to keep him out of regular season action. Al-Farouq Aminu is a young player to keep an eye on, as the former New Orleans player has a chance to be a steal for the Mavericks this season.

You have to think the Dallas Mavericks have more to prove in this matchup against their rivals, especially at home. I also see the Mavs playing their starters a little bit longer in hopes of them getting a feel of playing together. Even without Dirk, I like Dallas to get the job done here. 

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Dallas Mavericks -3.5

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