The Denver Nuggets host the Dallas Mavericks this Friday at 10 p.m. ET in a Western Conference showdown. The Nuggets are coming off the first championship in franchise history with Nikola Jokic leading the field of MVP favorites this year. Luka Doncic also has relatively short MVP odds as the leader of the Mavs. The Nuggets have opened at on the point spread.
Below, we take a closer look at Friday’s Mavs vs. Nuggets matchup, with info on the odds, betting lines, and player props for the NBA game.
High-scoring Mavericks look to out-gun the defending champs
As the former architect of a fast-break offense during his playing days, Mavs coach Jason Kidd is calling a fast-paced game with his current team. The Mavs have averaged nearly 120 points per game and allowed roughly the same since they acquired Kyrie Irving before the trade deadline last February. Denver finished fifth in offensive rating last season, and Dallas leads the NBA in offensive efficiency through three games this season.
Nuggets playing on short rest
This is the first leg of the second back-to-back set for the Nuggets this week and part of a frenetic stretch of their schedule that features five games in seven nights. Denver hosts Chicago tomorrow night, then hosts the Pelicans on Monday and the Warriors on Wednesday before getting a few days off next week. The Nuggets went 15-9 with a rest disadvantage last season.
Nikola Jokic versus young Mavericks centers
Mavericks rookie center Dereck Lively II had a stellar NBA debut against Victor Wembanyama and the Spurs, but now he’ll face arguably the most versatile and calculating big man the league has ever seen. Nikola Jokic posted relatively modest numbers (16.5 PPG, 10.5 RPG, 9 APG) in two meetings with Dallas last season, and he missed the other two meetings.
Luka Doncic versus the Denver defense
The Nuggets have done an excellent job containing some elite scorers early in the season. Denver held Shai Gilgeous-Alexander to his least efficient line in several seasons and held Anthony Davis scoreless in the second half of the season opener. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope will likely start at the point of attack against Luka Doncic, who averaged 28.5 points and 10 assists per game over four meetings with Denver last season.
Mavericks vs. Nuggets odds and betting lines
Mavericks vs. Nuggets injury report
For the Mavericks, Kyrie Irving missed Monday’s game in Memphis with a foot sprain.
The Nuggets are relatively healthy as they enter their title defense. Forward Vlatko Cancar is out indefinitely after undergoing knee surgery this offseason.