Dallas Mavericks vs Oklahoma City Thunder Picks and Predictions May 18th 2024

Dallas Mavericks vs Oklahoma City Thunder NBA Sat, May 18, 20:00 pm.
Dallas Mavericks
ML: -185
Oklahoma City Thunder
ML: 150

Host Mavericks Looking to Bounce Top- Seeded Thunder

Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks are trying to stay focused and not get too wrapped up in the stakes of Saturday’s contest against the visiting Oklahoma City Thunder. The Mavericks hold a 3- 2 lead in the Western Conference second-round series, and a win would propel fifth- seeded Dallas into the conference finals for the second time in three seasons.

Dallas Mavericks’ Perspective

Focus and Mentality

Even with their lead, the Mavericks are conservative, especially after failing to cover home court in Game 4.” We have got one more to win out of two games,” Doncic told journalists.” That is it. We are up 3- 2, but that is still nothing. We have got to finish it and go with the same mentality at home.”

Dallas recaptured the series lead with a 104- 92 road victory over the Thunder in Game 5, putting top- seeded Oklahoma City on the point of elimination.

Oklahoma City Thunder’s Perspective

Determination and Resilience

” Our mood will not change, our mentality will not change,” Thunder star Shai Gilgeous- Alexander said.” It’s one game at a time. We wanted to win( Game 5) as badly as we are going to want to win the coming game.”

Gilgeous- Alexander, who finished third in NBA MVP voting, has been outstanding in the series, averaging31.4 points with four straight 30- point games.

Player Performances and Impact

Luka Doncic’s Contributions

Doncic is averaging23.8 points,10.6 rebounds, and8.4 assists in the series. He recorded his second straight triple-double in Game 5, with 31 points, 11 assists, and 10 rebounds.” Our mentality, we know the last game we played against them at home, we let it go,” Doncic said.” It was our miscalculations and they hit shots. In the playoffs, it’s the first to four, you got to win before they do. So you got to go game by game.”

Need for Support

The Thunder will need further support for Gilgeous- Alexander, who has been their standout performer. In Game 5, no other Thunder player scored further than Chet Holmgren’s 13 points, and the team struggled from 3- point range, shooting just 10 of 40.

Quotes and Insights

Team Mindsets

Jalen Williams of the Thunder emphasized the need for adaptability.” We know it’s a tough task going over there and winning, but now it’s kind of like that first to best out of three series and that is how we are treating it.”

Mavericks star Kyrie Irving highlighted the focus needed for the series.” This is one of the hardest series I have ever played, so just the focus position has to be at a level that reflects that,” Irving said.” We’ve what it takes to win. But also, we understand we are not going to get there without guys feeling like their best selves.”

Strategic adaptations

Lineup Changes

Oklahoma City experimented with a lineup change in Game 5, moving third- year point guard Josh Giddey to the bench for the first time in his career and elevating Isaiah Joe to the starting lineup. Joe managed just six points on 2- of- 9 shooting.

Conclusion and Outlook

As the Mavericks and Thunder prepare for Game 6, the stakes are incredibly high. The Mavericks aim to secure their place in the conference finals, while the Thunder fight to extend their season. With crucial players like Doncic and Gilgeous- Alexander in the spotlight, this game promises to be an intense and thrilling battle.

Docsports, The most trusted name in sports handicapping
Fri, May 17, 09:34 am.
Dallas Mavericks
O 208.5
Oklahoma City Thunder
U 208.5
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2024-05-18 11:02