The NBA season is back tonight, and we go straight in early on this time with a pick in order to try and take advantage of some poor lines early on.
Dirk Nowitzki & his Dallas Mavericks are hosting the Denver Nuggets; with the aim of a win to continue the success that this team did not expect to had after the major rebuilding they did in the summer. With all that lives and breathes with the Mavericks; Dirk is expected to shoulder the scoring responsibility for this team. While he is now at the rip ol’ age of 37; he still continues to be one of the best shooters in the game knocking it down at 53% from the field.
Dirk takes on average 13 shots from the field knocking down around 7 of them, with majority coming outside the paint as he draws the defender out and take advantage of his height and shooting range. Dirk has also been knocking it down from 3 point range and shooting over 50% to take advantage of the high quality shots that his team creates for him.
Dirk has shown in some games, when he shooting touch is in flow, there is very little or hardly anyone that can stop him from scoring. He showed some of that class against younger defenders particularly in teams like Utah, Boston, Clippers, New Orleans, Charlotte and Lakers that he can really make a mess against these poor defensive teams.
Tonight Dirk comes up against the Denver Nuggets who have lost Kenneth Faried to injury, opposing forwards have scored a lot of points against Gallinari who is more focussed as an offensive player and players like Griffin (18), Barnes (17), Teletovic (15) have scored against him in recent games.
I am backing Dirk to go over the 17 point margin and if he scores exactly 17, its a refund.
The Utah Jazz travel to New Orleans Pelicans team who are leaking buckets for fun when their rank dead last in the NBA in conceding points 110 points per game. Last night they lost by 21 points to the LA Clippers; and straight away travel to Utah to take them on, after they beat the Clippers themselves and have had 3 days rest.
Gordon Hayward comes into this game in some sparkling form after netting down 33 points against the LA Clippers and maintained a scoring average of 19 points over games against Toronto, Dallas and Oklahoma, who are all playoff bound teams. Hayward is the primary offensive weapon for this Jazz team especially since they focus more on defence than on offence (they are the 3rd best defensive points conceded in the NBA).
Hayward is known around NBA circles to be a pure shooter knocking down an average of 19 points per game over his last 10. He takes on average 14 shots per game this year; up by 4 from last year and knocking them down at over 43%. He is also a good 3-point shooters attempting 4 and knocking down around 2 over the last 4 game stretch mentioned above. Hayward occasionally also gets to the basket knocking down around 5 free throws a night.
Tonight he will face a match up against Alonso Gee and Dante Cunningham who are poor defenders, and I believe that Hayward will have his way with the Pelicans especially since they have lost Davis; they are lacking a good defender that will stop their opponents from scoring. Hayward should go over his 18 points average.
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