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Dallas Mavericks vs. New Orleans Pelicans - 2/26/14

New Orleans Pelicans (23-33) at Dallas Mavericks (35-23)

NBA Basketball: Wednesday, February 26, 2014 at 8:00 pm (American Airlines Center)

The Line: Dallas Mavericks -8 -- Over/Under: 205 See the Latest Odds


The New Orleans Pelicans and Dallas Mavericks will meet for the fourth and final time this season. Dallas leads the series 2-1, with the Pelicans winning the most recent meeting in early January.

The Pelicans have lost four straight and six of their last seven games. A lot of these struggles are coming from a lack of offense, as they’re averaging just 96.6 points on 45.2 percent shooting in their last five games. They’ve scored no more than 93 points in three of their last four games. Defensively, they’ve allowed 100.6 points and teams to shoot above 40 percent from beyond the arc. On the road, they average 98.4 points and give up 102.8 points. They are 24-28-4 ATS overall and 11-15-3 ATS on the road.

Dallas Mavericks vs. New Orleans Pelicans - 2/26/14

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

The Mavericks remain hot, winning three straight and nine of their last 11 games. Their most recent victory came Monday against the New York Knicks, thanks to an improbable shot by Dirk Nowitzki. They’ve now scored at least 106 points in four straight games, which doesn’t bode well against a struggling New Orleans team. At home, they’re averaging 107.4 points on 48.5 percent shooting and allowing 103.2 points on 46 percent shooting. They are 32-26 ATS overall and 12-15 ATS at home.

It’s no secret the Mavs are the better team and should win this game outright, but eight points may be asking for a bit too much. Dallas is coming off a three-game road trip and an emotional victory, while the Pelicans are a young team that’s hungry to get back in the win column.

Two of the three games this season were decided by just three points, and the road team has covered six of the last seven meetings.

I’ll take the Pelicans and the points.

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