Today we will take a look at the Western Conference matchup between Phoenix Suns and Dallas Mavericks at Talking Stick Resort Arena, the home of Phoenix Suns. This is a match which will bring a lot of attention, due to the fact we will see 2 of the top three picks in this year’s NBA draft playing their first game against each other. With DeAndre Ayton representing Phoenix Suns and Luka Doncic representing Dallas Mavericks, they will be hoping to prove themselves to the world in their 1st game of the 2018/19 NBA season.
Looking at Phoenix Suns, their new star, DeAndre Ayton showed impressive performance in the preseason. He averaged 19 points, 9 rebounds and 61% FG, and he will be hoping to do just as good, if not better tonight. Despite his great performance, Phoenix Suns won only 1 game out of 4 played in the preseason. They were defeated by Sacramento Kings (102:106), Portland Trailblazers (93:115) and once again by Portland in a rematch (116:83). On the bright side, Suns won a match against Golden State Warriors (109:117).
The visiting team tonight, Dallas Mavericks will be showing their newly added player, Luka Doncic in his 1st game of the season. Doncic gained a lot of attention worldwide with his impressive performance in the EuroLeague, where he won numerous awards. Not only did he win the title with Real Madrid, but he was also named the EuroLeague MVP of 2018. In addition, he was exceptional in Eurobasket, where he went on to win the historic title for his country, Slovenia. As a no.3 pick in the NBA Draft, he has not disappointed with his performances in Dallas neither. He proved he can shoot, assist and drive, all on an NBA level. Looking at how Dallas performed in the preseason, they have won only 1 match out of 3 played. Dallas fell against Philadelphia 76ers (120:114) in their 1st game and Charlotte Hornets (118:123), however, they managed to defeat Philadelphia 76ers in a rematch (112:115). Dallas Mavericks will miss Harrison Barnes for the next match, but from what we have seen, it won’t affect their overall performance to an extent which will put them in a worse position compared to Suns.
Both of the rookies have performed well in the preseason, but the real test starts today. I do not have any doubts they can continue putting up great numbers throughout the season and even improve as the season progresses. Suns will be hoping Ayton will continue with performances he showed thus far, but there is 1 man on the opposing team more than capable of stopping him. Mavericks acquired DeAndre Jordan, one of the best defensive players in the league who is the right man for the job. If he is capable of neutralizing Ayton, which he should be, Suns will be put in a tough position. As mentioned before, Dallas will be missing Harrison, but even without him, they come off as a better team in this next fixture. Suns, despite having some decent players seem to still be learning the new strategy their coach is implementing. In addition, if Dallas manages to stop Ayton, Suns will most likely start the season with an L. Expect Dallas to win this one and add their first win of the season to their record.
Prediction: Dallas Mavericks to win
Odds: 2.03 5Dimes, 2.02 Dafabet, 2.00 Pinnacle