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NBA Picks: May 24

By Lior Lampert

Although the final score says otherwise, it felt like the Golden State Warriors won Game 3 by 20 points and it was a performance that reminded us why this team should still be considered a dynasty so long as Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green are around. Not to mention Andrew Wiggins, who has been spectacular in his own right and had what will likely go down as the dunk of the year in the victory. The Mavericks are officially on the brink of elimination, and no team in the NBA’s 75-yeat history has ever come back from an 0-3 deficit, so it is safe to say that their chances of pulling this series out are slim at best. Does Luka Doncic have any magic left in him to at least take care of business at home and give them any hopes of extending the series? 

After a slow start, the Warriors seemed to flip a switch towards the end of the first half before ultimately ceasing control of the game in the third quarter. It is easy to talk about Stephen Curry and his greatness, but Kevon Looney and Andrew Wiggins have had their fingerprints all over this series. Looney continues to make an impact rebounding on both sides of the court, averaging over 3 offensive rebounds per game and a fraction under 10 total rebounds per game through three games. Andrew Wiggins delivered in a big way in Game 3, as he and Stephen Curry became only the second duo this postseason to each have 25-point double-doubles. The Warriors are typically a team known for their shooting, but they finished with 46 points in the paint and that continues to be a theme throughout this series. Do the Mavericks have the size to battle down low with the likes of Draymond Green and Kevon Looney? 

On the other hand, the Mavericks need to do a better job of spreading the wealth on the offensive end. Doncic, Spencer Dinwiddie and Jalen Brunson for 86 out of the teams 100 points. That is simply not going to get the job done against a team looking to make their sixth NBA finals appearance in the last eight years. The question for Dallas is who do they have outside of those three who can give them a scoring boost? Reggie Bullock played 40 minutes but had zero points to show for it on 0-10 shooting. 

The Mavs need help, and they need it fast. They also need Jalen Brunson to continue to score at the pace he has been in the last two games, while also taking more than 12 shot attempts like he did in Game 3. He is averaging 18.1 field goal attempts per game in the postseason, and with the Mavs season on the line, he should have a chance to exceed that number in Game 4. Even on 12 field goal attempts, he still attempted six threes and made three of them. He’s shot no less than 5 3-point attempts in any game this series and with his expected shooting volume in this game, he should make more than 1.5 3s in Game 4. 

My Pick: Jalen Brunson Over 1.5 Three Pointers Made (-115 via DraftKings Sportsbook)

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