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NBA Finals Game 3

Dallas Mavericks vs. Boston Celtics Preview

Dallas, TX — The 2024 NBA Finals continue with Game 3 as the Dallas Mavericks host the Boston Celtics on Wednesday night. The Mavericks, trailing 0-2 in the series, aim to leverage home-court advantage at the American Airlines Center to bounce back against a Celtics team that has been unbeatable on the road this postseason.

Boston’s Road Dominance

The Celtics have been a powerhouse away from home, boasting a perfect 6-0 record on the road during the 2024 NBA playoffs. Their latest victory, a 105-98 win over Dallas on Sunday, showcased their resilience and depth. Boston’s defensive intensity and balanced scoring have been key factors in their success, and they will look to maintain this momentum in Game 3.

Forward Jayson Tatum continues to be a pivotal player for the Celtics. Despite facing constant double teams, Tatum has elevated his playmaking abilities, averaging 17 points, 10 rebounds, and 8.5 assists per game in the Finals. His ability to find open teammates and make crucial plays has been instrumental in Boston’s road success.

Additionally, guard Derrick White has provided a consistent offensive spark. White is averaging 17.6 points, four rebounds, and 4.4 assists per game in the postseason. His performance in Game 2, where he scored 18 points and grabbed five rebounds, highlights his crucial role in Boston’s lineup.

Mavericks’ Home Court Hopes

The Mavericks, with a 5-3 home record in the playoffs, are looking to rebound from their road losses. Kyrie Irving, a player known for his clutch performances, has struggled in the first two games but remains a critical factor for Dallas. Irving’s ability to score from anywhere on the court and his playoff experience will be essential if the Mavericks are to turn the series around.

Forward Derrick Jones Jr. is another player to watch for Dallas. Known for his athleticism and defensive prowess, Jones Jr. has been a valuable contributor throughout the playoffs, averaging 9.6 points and 3.7 rebounds per game. His energy and scoring ability could provide the spark the Mavericks need to secure a win at home.

However, the uncertainty surrounding Kristaps Porzingis’ availability looms over the Mavericks. Porzingis, who is listed as questionable due to a lower leg injury, could significantly impact the game. His presence on the floor would add a crucial defensive and offensive dimension for Dallas.

Game 3 Odds and Predictions

Tipoff is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. ET at the American Airlines Center. The Mavericks are slight favorites, with a 2.5-point edge according to the latest odds via SportsLine consensus. The over/under for total points is set at 212.5.

The SportsLine Projection Model, which has been highly accurate in its NBA picks, simulates every game 10,000 times. It has a proven track record, entering the Finals with a 94-61 record on top-rated NBA picks this season. The model suggests a slight edge towards the Mavericks covering the spread, while leaning towards the total points going under 212.5.

What to Expect

Expect an intense battle as the Mavericks seek to capitalize on their home-court advantage and the Celtics aim to extend their road perfection. Key matchups to watch include Irving’s response to his earlier struggles, Tatum’s continued playmaking under pressure, and the potential impact of Porzingis if he takes the court.

As both teams gear up for a pivotal Game 3, the stage is set for another thrilling chapter in the 2024 NBA Finals. Stay tuned for an electrifying game that could shape the direction of this tightly contested series.

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