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Dallas Mavericks vs. L.A. Lakers NBA Preview & Free Pick

Mavericks vs Lakers NBA Spread/Handicapping

The Los Angeles Lakers and the Dallas Mavericks have established a rich history over the past decade, but these two rivals are both bringing in new-look rosters into the 2012-13 season. The season opener in Los Angeles is going to be a showcase of the two new rotations, and it will be broadcast for the national audience to see on the first night of the new season.

Dallas Mavericks (0-0) @ Los Angeles Lakers (0-0)
Tuesday Oct. 30, 2012 on TNT
STAPLES Center, Los Angeles, CALIF.
10:30 PM ET
Moneyline: OFF
Spread: Lakers 8.5 from GTBets.eu
O/U: 187.5

Matchup | Preview | Check Out Ray’s NBA Plays!

Dallas Mavericks

The Dallas Mavericks failed to bring in their No. 1 free-agent target this summer in Deron Williams, and in doing so, they all but eliminated themselves from the Dwight Howard sweepstakes. The team also let Jason Terry and Jason Kidd escape their grasps in free agency, but that didn’t stop the team from going out and bringing in the pieces necessary to rebuild starting this year.

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Darren Collison is a good young point guard who should create a solid challenge for Steve Nash on opening night. O.J. Mayo doesn’t hold a candle to Kobe Bryant, but his game has All-Star potential if he can put it together under Rick Carlisle. Even Elton Brand and Chris Kaman, who are both likely past their primes, will provide toughness down low that the team lacked last year after letting Tyson Chandler slip away.

However, the most important thing to consider about this Dallas team to start the year is that they are going to be without their go-to option on offense, Dirk Nowitzki. The 34-year-old forward who averaged 21.6 points last season—26.8 in the postseason—will miss time early in the year with a knee injury. The team was just 19th in the league in 2012 in points per game (95.8) and it could be difficult to keep up with a stacked Lakers squad without Nowitzki on their side.

Los Angeles Lakers

The Los Angeles Lakers have become arguably the most polarizing team in the NBA, and all eyes will be on them when the season kicks off Tuesday night. Dwight Howard, Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash and Pau Gasol on the same team has created an All-Star-type feel to this roster, but they’re going to be all business moving forward.

Howard is still questionable at this point for the season opener, but he’s been targeting the contest against Dallas as his time to return. If he is able to play, the inside advantage goes to L.A. on every possession he’s in the game. One of the biggest variables to the entire Lakers’ season, however, is how well Bryant can play off the ball with Nash controlling the offense. We’ll get a glimpse into how that story will play out this week, but to start the season, Bryant will have the chance to take on a subpar defender in Mayo. [ad-6571516]

Don’t be surprised to see the new-look Lakers struggle against the spread at times this season as they continue to build chemistry, but with Dallas missing their star player in game one, L.A. should look to take advantage.

Both teams should encounter rough patches as new personalities attempt to jell on the floor, but with the Mavericks missing their leading scorer on opening night, the game should belong to the most talented group, which is by far the Lakers this season.

Trends

Over is 5-1 in the last 6 meetings.
Over is 4-1 in Lakers last 5 overall.
Over is 12-3-1 in Lakers last 16 games playing on 3 or more days rest.
Over is 4-1 in Lakers last 5 home games.
Over is 5-1 in Mavericks last 6 road games.
Over is 4-1 in Mavericks last 5 overall.

O/U Pick: Over 187.5
Score Prediction: Los Angeles Lakers 103 – Dallas Mavericks 90

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