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2021 NBA Playoffs: Mavericks vs. Clippers odds, line, picks, Game 1 predictions from model on 99-66 roll

Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks get another crack at the team that ended their season a year ago when they visit the Los Angeles Clippers in Game 1 of their Western Conference postseason series on Saturday afternoon. While the Clippers posted a 4-2 series win over Dallas in 2020, neither franchise has distinguished itself in the playoffs over the past decade. Los Angeles has posted 10 straight top-two division finishes but has not advanced past the second round, while Dallas is 0-for-5 in the opening round since winning the NBA title in 2010-11.

Tip-off is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. ET at the Staples Center. William Hill Sportsbook lists the Clippers as 5.5-point favorites, while the over-under for total points scored is 217.5 in the latest Mavericks vs. Clippers odds. Before you make any Clippers vs. Mavericks picks, be sure to see the NBA predictions and betting advice from SportsLine’s proven computer model.

The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every NBA game 10,000 times and has returned over $9,100 in profit on its top-rated NBA picks over the past two-plus seasons. The model is up almost $900 on its top-rated picks this season and entered the 2020-21 NBA Playoffs on a stunning 99-66 roll on top-rated NBA picks against the spread dating back to last season. Anybody who has followed it has seen huge returns.

Now, the model has set its sights on Mavericks vs. Clippers. You can head to SportsLine to see its picks. Here are several NBA betting lines for Clippers vs. Mavericks:

  • Mavericks vs. Clippers spread: Clippers -5.5
  • Mavericks vs. Clippers over-under: 217.5 points
  • Mavericks vs. Clippers money line: Clippers -220; Mavericks +190
  • DAL: The Mavericks won 12 of their final 16 games
  • LAC: The Clippers lead the NBA in 3-point FG percentage (41.1)

Featured Game | Los Angeles Clippers vs. Dallas Mavericks

Why the Mavericks can cover

Last season’s series vs. the Clippers was Doncic’s indoctrination to the postseason and he responded to the challenge with a sensational performance, averaging 31.0 points, 9.8 rebounds and 8.7 assists. He posted consecutive triple-doubles in the series, including a masterpiece in which he scored 43 points while playing on a sprained ankle. Doncic continued to torment Los Angeles this season, averaging 30.3 points, 11.0 assists and 8.3 rebounds.

Kristaps Porzingis missed the final three playoff games vs. Los Angeles due to a knee injury and sat out 29 more games this season, but the 7-foot-3 forward is averaging 19.3 points and hit 9-of-15 3-pointers since rejoining the lineup in the final three games. While Porzingis provides a much needed second scoring option, Dallas needs consistency from Tim Hardaway Jr., Jalen Brunson and Josh Richardson, who average between 16.6 and 12.1 points.

Why the Clippers can cover

Leading scorer Kawhi Leonard (24.8 points per game) missed nine games in April due to a foot injury and failed to score more than 16 points in four of six games this month. However, he thrives under big-game pressure, averaging 32.8 points in the six-game series vs. Dallas and winning NBA Finals MVP the previous season after leading Toronto to the NBA title. He averaged 21.0 points, 7.5 rebounds and 7.0 assists in two matchups vs. the Mavericks in March.

Paul George averaged 23.3 points and carried the team in April when Leonard was sidelined, eclipsing 30 points seven times in an eight-game stretch last month. Unlike Leonard, though, he has his ups and downs in the postseason, struggling mightily with his shooting from behind the arc (14-of-51), while averaging 18.5 points vs. Dallas last season. George has regained his stroke this season and is hitting 41.1 percent of his 3-point attempts.  

How to make Clippers vs. Mavericks picks

SportsLine’s model is leaning over on the total, projecting the teams to combine for 222 points. The model also says one side of the spread hits in almost 60 percent of simulations. You can get that pick at SportsLine.

So who wins Mavericks vs. Clippers? And which side of the spread hits in nearly 60 percent of simulations? Visit SportsLine now to find out which side of the spread you need to jump on, all from the model that is on a 99-66 roll on NBA picks.