Thunder vs Mavericks Game 6 Picks, Odds | NBA Playoffs Prediction

The second round of the NBA Playoffs continues with one crucial matchup this Saturday, but it's going to be a good one, as Thunder vs. Mavericks Game 6 takes center stage at 8:00 p.m. ET on ESPN.

The Mavs are 4-point favorites on the spread in Saturday's contest, while the total is set at over/under 210 total points at DraftKings.

Here's everything you need to know about Game 6 of the Western Conference Semifinals between the Mavericks and Thunder -- the latest betting odds, as well as our expert picks and prediction for the NBA Playoffs on Saturday, May 18.

Thunder vs Mavericks Odds

OKC @ DAL Odds

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Thunder vs Mavericks Picks & Prediction

After placing such a heavy defensive emphasis on Luka Doncic in the first four games of this series, to mixed degrees of success, the Thunder decided to call off the dogs in Game 5, and Luka made them pay for it.

As an opposing team, you have to pick-and-choose your battles when facing a Mavericks offense with the superstar duo of Doncic and Irving at the helm – and in the first four games of this series, the Thunder chose to delegate a surplus of help to containing Luka on defense, and it worked to some extent, as they managed to hold Doncic to only 22 points per game on 39% from the floor and 31% from 3-point range through Game 4. But it came at the cost of leaving PJ Washington with enough space to average 21.8 points on 49% from the field and 51% from long range on the way to a 2-2 split in those four contests. So, Oklahoma City decided to shake things up in Game 5, and it didn’t go so well…

The Thunder did a pretty good job of slowing down Washington and Irving in the latest meeting between these teams, as the two stars of the series for Dallas up to that point combined for a lackluster total of 22 points on 9-of-20 (45%) from the field in Game 5. Instead, however, they allowed Luka to run wild, and clearly that’s the worse of the two evils, as the Mavs posted a monster offensive rating of 120.6 behind 31 points (55% shooting), 10 rebounds, and 11 assists from Doncic in an 8-point road victory for Dallas this past Wednesday.

So, what happens moving forward? As I previously mentioned, the Thunder have to pick-and-choose their battles on defense, and I expect to see their defensive strategy revert back to something similar to what we saw in the first four games of this series when OKC was heavily focused on Luka and forced the Mavs to play through their role players at an unusually high volume.

With that in mind though, the Mavs still managed to win two of the first four games in this series despite limiting Luka. So there’s no telling if going back to the old formula will ultimately lead to a win for the Thunder in Game 6, especially if they shoot 42% from the floor and 25% from 3-point range like they did in their latest outing. First things first, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is going to need some help on offense, but I expect OKC to switch up the defensive strategy again anyway, which will likely result in another dip in the scoring department for Doncic, but certainly not the end of the world for Dallas.

Prior to going off for 31 points in Game 5, Luka scored 22 points or less in three of four matchups to open this series, with his only performance north of that number ringing in at 29 points back in Game 2. I’ll back Doncic to stay under 28.5 points in Game 6.

Pick: Luka Doncic Under 28.5 Points (-110)

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Thunder vs Mavericks Game Time & TV Channel

Date: Saturday, May 18
Matchup: Southwest vs. Northwest
Venue: American Airlines Center
Location: Dallas, TX
Time-TV: ESPN, 8:00 p.m. ET

Thunder vs Mavericks Betting Stats

1) Oklahoma City Thunder
(1st Place, Northwest)

  • Odds to Win Finals: +2500
  • Odds to Win Conference: +850
  • Odds to Win Series: +290
  • SU: 57-25
  • ATS: 46-35-1
  • O/U: 45-36-1
  • PPG: 120.1
  • OPPG: 112.7

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5) Dallas Mavericks
(1st Place, Southwest)

  • Odds to Win Finals: +850
  • Odds to Win Conference: +230
  • Odds to Win Series: -385
  • SU: 50-32
  • ATS: 48-34
  • O/U: 36-45-1
  • PPG: 117.9
  • OPPG: 115.6

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