Heat vs. Mavericks NBA Preview and Best Bet

Dewayne Dedmon #21 of the Miami Heat reacts after being called for a foul. Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images/AFP

The Dallas Mavericks opened as 2-point home faves on the NBA odds board for Tuesday’s game with the Miami Heat. Deal, or no deal?

Miami Heat vs. Dallas Mavericks

Tuesday, November 2, 2021 – 7:30 PM EDT at American Airlines Center

Just off the top of your head, who do you think is the better team right now: the Miami Heat, or the Dallas Mavericks? If you’ve been paying attention, chances are you picked Miami. They’ve gotten off to a hot start at 5-1 SU and ATS, with Jimmy Butler playing at a true MVP level now that he’s got his best bud Kyle Lowry by his side.

The Mavericks (4-2 SU, 2-4 ATS) have a winning record straight-up, but they’re having a lot more trouble beating the NBA odds. Which makes it very interesting that DraftKings have opened the Mavericks as 2-point home faves for Tuesday’s matchup. Home-court advantage is worth just a shade over two points these days, so their NBA lines suggest Miami and Dallas are evenly matched on paper – and they aren’t. Is there any reason you shouldn’t put the Miami Heat in your basketball picks?

Dedmon Walking

Possibly. Bam Adebayo is listed as day-to-day after suffering a bruised left knee at some point last week. He played Friday night against the Charlotte Hornets and torched them for 26 points and 19 rebounds, but was unable to suit up Saturday versus the Memphis Grizzlies.

If Adebayo can’t play Tuesday, then yes, maybe these teams are even-steven – and maybe DraftKings got some early info on his status. Here’s the thing: Adebayo did practice Monday, and this won’t be the second of back-to-back games for the Heat.

Also, Miami still beat the Grizzlies 129-103 as 3.5-point road dogs, with Dewayne Dedmon filling in for Adebayo and matching Butler at a team-high plus-22. Adebayo is obviously the better player, but Dedmon has been a capable substitute when he’s put in the right situation, as he was five years ago in his lone season with the San Antonio Spurs. Miami seems to be a good fit as well.

Bam Adebayo #13 of the Miami Heat drives to the basket. Mark Brown/Getty Images/AFP

Kristaps S. Pumpkins

If Adebayo isn’t the reason behind that 2-point spread, it could simply be the betting market over-valuing the Mavericks. Luka Doncic may be all kinds of amazing, but this year’s supporting cast just isn’t up to par – especially Kristaps Porzingis, who turned from a unicorn into a pumpkin after tearing his left ACL and missing the entire 2018-19 campaign.

The Mavs might be just one win behind Miami in the overall standings, but check out those point differentials: The Heat lead the entire league at a ridiculous plus-17.0, while Dallas are deep in the red at minus-4.7. Small sample size is an issue here – there’s no way Miami will keep beating their opponents by 17 points per game – but it does illustrate to some extent the performance gap between the two clubs. Bet accorgingly.

NBA Pick: Heat +2 (–110) at DraftKings