The dogs came out barking on Wednesday with both the Bucks and Grizzlies securing the win and taking the series lead. Memphis embarrassed the Warriors, whooping them by 39 points and improving to a 21-6 record without Ja Morant on the season. The Bucks pulled off the comeback victory after a clutch go-ahead put-back shot by Bobby Portis off a Giannis Antetokounmpo missed free throw with 11 seconds remaining. Thursday presents two series-clinching opportunities for both the Miami Heat and Phoenix Suns on the road looking to secure their ticket to the conference finals. Let’s dive into the best NBA bets today, picks and NBA betting tips for Thursday, May 12.
Best NBA Bets Today: Game Tips & Betting Predictions
Suns vs. Mavericks Prediction
Phoenix and Dallas meet in Game 6 of the Western Conference semifinals at the American Airlines Center tonight. The Suns will look to close out the series and book their ticket to a second consecutive conference finals trip. Phoenix is coming off a dominating 110-80 Game 5 victory. Dallas is hoping to force a Game 7 by continuing the series trend of the home team winning every game in the series so far. Tipoff is set for 10 p.m. ET on ESPN.
The Suns bounced back in Game 5 to reclaim the series lead after dropping the two previous games on the road. As a team, the Suns shot 49% from the field and 12-for-32 from the 3-point line, but this win was more about their defense holding the Mavericks to a playoff-low 80 points. Phoenix is back in Dallas on Thursday for Game 6. The Suns rank No. 1 in offensive rating through the 2022 NBA Playoffs and are averaging 111.2 points per game through 11 games. Phoenix was able to clean up their perimeter defense in Game 5, and it showed how easily they can control the Dallas offense by locking down the outside shots. They rank top seven in opponent 3-point percentage, allowing just 34% from beyond the arc this year. Their defense is seventh, holding opponents to 106.9 points per game. Phoenix continued to be active on the boards, outrebounding Dallas 50-38 on Tuesday. They are now outrebounding Dallas by an average of 10.2 rebounds per game through the first five games. Controlling the glass will limit Dallas’ second-chance opportunities.
The Mavericks could not get it done on offense in Game 5, finishing with a measly 80 points on 27-for-71 (38%) shooting as a team. They kept the game close in the first half, but the Suns busted the lead wide open in the third quarter, outscoring Dallas 33-14. Dallas finished the game with 18 turnovers, 12 of which came in the third quarter. They only had nine assists as a team, compared to Phoenix’s 28 assists in Game 5. The Mavericks have been impressive all season at home compiling a 33-13 record. The league’s second-ranked scoring defense will look to put forth a better effort on Thursday after allowing the Suns to shoot 49% from the field in Game 5. Dallas’ defense is conceding 111 points per game to the Suns through the first five games. If the Mavericks want to survive tonight, they will need more offensive production from players outside of Luka Doncic and Jalen Brunson. Dorian Finney-Smith and Reggie Bullock need to be more involved in Game 6. The two combined for only eight 3-point attempts in their previous contest.
Both defenses are allowing less than 107 points per game in the playoffs. These two squads play excellent perimeter defense, and Phoenix seems to have made the right adjustments to apply more pressure from beyond the arc. This series is turning into more of a physical, defensive battle as these teams learn each other’s tendencies. The under has hit in the last three matchups and is 9-4 in their last 13 meetings. The under is 33-12-1 in Dallas home games this season. Dallas knows the only way they can win this game is through a strong defensive performance. Phoenix has proven they are the better team in the higher-scoring affairs, so it will take an all-out effort from the Mavericks to survive a win-or-go home scenario. Too much of the offense rides on Doncic shoulders, and that will be seen once again in Game 6. Ride the recent trend and take the under in today’s Game 6.
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Best NBA Bet for Today’s Game: Total Under 211.5 Points