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Dallas Mavericks vs. Oklahoma City Thunder - 4/21/16 NBA Pick, Odds, and Prediction

Oklahoma City Thunder (56-28) at Dallas Mavericks (43-41)

NBA Basketball: Thursday, April 21, 2016 at 7:00 pm (American Airlines Center)

The Line: Dallas Mavericks +8.5 -- Over/Under: 196.5 See the Latest Odds

TV:

The Dallas Mavericks and the Oklahoma City Thunder collide in Game 3 tonight at the American Airlines Center.

The Thunder must have thought they were going to easily sweep the Mavericks after dominating Game 1 and winning by 38 points, but they received a rude shock in Game 2 when they lost by 85-84 in a thriller on Monday.  Russell Westbrook had a solid game of 19 points, 14 rebounds and six assists but Kevin Durant struggled mightly for the entire game as he scored 21 points but shot just seven of 33 from the field to go with a game-high seven turnovers. Despite the team's struggles, the Thunder looked to have escaped with a win at the buzzer when Steven Adams connected on a putback layup, but replays showed that the ball was still in his hands with time expiring. It was a disappointing loss for the Thunder who will still be confident with the knowledge that they almost won the game despite Durant having his worst game of the season.

Dallas Mavericks vs. Oklahoma City Thunder - 4/21/16 NBA Pick, Odds, and Prediction

USA TODAY Sports

Meanwhile, the Mavericks desperately needed to atone for their embarrassing performance in Game 1 and they did that with style in Game 2 on Monday. Dirk Nowitzki had a nice game of 17 points while Deron Williams and Salah Mejri added 13 and 12 points respectively, but the best player for the Mavs was actually Raymond Felton who finished with 21 points, 11 rebounds and three assists including a clutch go-ahead layup with just 0:28 left in the fourth quarter. As a team, the Mavs shot just 42.7 percent from the field and five of 19 from the 3-point line, but they did a fantastic job on the defensive end to hold the Thunder to just 33.7 percent shooting from the field and seven of 32 shooting from the 3-point line which was the difference in the end.

In ATS trends, the Thunder are 9-2 ATS in their last 11 games against a team with a winning record and 5-2 ATS in their last seven games overall, while the Mavs are 3-7 ATS in their last 10 home games and 2-6 ATS in their last eight Conference Quarterfinals games.

Head to head, the Thunder are 14-6-1 ATS in the last 21 meetings in Dallas and the road team is 36-17-2 ATS in the last 55 meetings overall.

The Mavs really put together a great defensive performance to limit Durant and the Thunder in Game 2, but I would be surprised if they could repeat that tonight as I can't see Durant struggling like that two games in a row. The Mavs will be pumped to return home fresh off a thrilling road win, but I think the Thunder will bounce back tonight behind a big scoring night from Durant.

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Oklahoma City -8.5

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