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Pick against the spread, best player prop for Nets vs. Mavericks on Thursday

We go over some of the best betting options for Thursday’s matchup between the Brooklyn Nets and Dallas Mavericks.

Can Brooklyn cover shorthanded?

The Mavericks (37-28) are in desperate need of a win to hang onto their automatic playoff spot as the sixth-place Lakers are right on pace with them, while the seventh-place Trail Blazers are only a half a game behind. Luckily, the Mavs are in great form, going 7-3 in their last 10 outings. Unfortunately for them, they’re facing off against a heavy NBA title contender the Brooklyn Nets (43-23), who are trying to keep pace with the first-place 76ers. The Nets have lost their last three straight, dropping a result against the Blazers followed by a pair of narrow losses to the Milwaukee Bucks.

Nets vs. Mavericks, 7:30 p.m. ET, TNT

Pick ATS: Nets -4

The Nets are still without James Harden (hamstring), who has been sidelined for about a month. Kevin Durant has been in great form recently, putting in a pair of 42-point games, while scoring 30 or more in four of his last five. Kyrie Irving led the team with 38 points in their 118-124 loss to the Bucks on Tuesday while Durant added 32 points and nine rebounds. The Mavericks will be without forward Kristaps Porzingis (knee), making it seven of the Mavs’ last eight he’s been sidelined for, while Maxi Kleber (achilles) will also be forced to sit this one out.

While the Nets have struggled over their last few games, going 5-5 in their last 10, Durant and Irving have what it takes to carry this team even in Harden’s absence. With Dallas missing a couple key players, the Nets are the favorites in this match-up and should be able to cover the spread on the road.

Player Prop: Kyrie Irving O25.5 points (-134)

Irving has scored at least 28 points in three of his last five, and has averaged an impressive 28.3 points per game away from home this season. If he has a good night from downtown especially, he’ll have no trouble scoring at least 30 against the Mavs. He drained six three-pointers on Tuesday against the Bucks, and will hope to carry that same energy to American Airlines Center tonight.

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