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Sport: 3 things to consider prior to the Dallas Mavericks facing the Utah Jazz on Christmas night

Three trade targets the Utah Jazz need to consider

  Three trade targets the Utah Jazz need to consider The Utah Jazz are on the brink of serious title contention but a move might be necessary to make it happenIt’s no coincidence that as we are approaching the 15th, we’re starting to see multiple trade rumors like renewed Ben Simmons rumors like this one today.

Betting insight and analysis as the Mavericks try to cool off the red-hot Jazz in the final game of the NBA's Christmas slate. Christmas Day is to the NBA as Thanksgiving is to the NFL. Utah is victorious in eight of its last 10 games and has a Thursday night game against Minnesota before its Dallas games have a strong tendency to go under, and considering this is both teams' third game

The Utah Jazz will look to spread holiday cheer as they take on the Dallas Mavericks for their Christmas day matchup at Vivint Arena. With so many of the Mavericks in isolation because of Covid protocols, this may be relatively easy. In a recent game against the Bucks, Jalen Brunson and the rest of the Mavericks led the Bucks through three quarters until exhaustion took over in the 4th. Can Utah set a tone early that keeps the Mavericks from thinking they have a chance? That might really be the goal for this one: not just winning, but can you keep the minutes down of all your star players?

Christmas day games are supposed to be a reward, a highlight game for the best or most popular teams in the league. That’s the way these showcase games are announced, usually in their own segment on an ESPN show.

  3 things to consider prior to the Dallas Mavericks facing the Utah Jazz on Christmas night © Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

When it was announced that the Mavericks were playing the Jazz in the night cap for Christmas games, I recall being excited. “A game after my kid is in bed and I’ve completed all family obligations sounds outstanding” or something along those lines.

But the Omicron strain of COVID-19 has other plans for the NBA and for the Dallas Mavericks specifically. Luka Doncic, Josh Green, Tim Hardaway Jr., Reggie Bullock, Maxi Kleber, Trey Burke, and JaQuori McLaughlin are all out due to COVID protocols. Kristaps Porzingis is questionable as of this writing with a toe issue, but I have a strong feeling that he plays.

The Royal Family's Most Dramatic Christmases—From Tragedy to Royal Exits

  The Royal Family's Most Dramatic Christmases—From Tragedy to Royal Exits Queen Elizabeth II and her royal family's Christmas celebrations attract the attention of millions around the world each year—but they are not always straightforward.But Christmas Day can be a controversial time as royal relationships are thrown into the public spotlight.

The Dallas Mavericks face the Utah Jazz in their preseason opener on Oct. 6. Here are three things to watch for in that contest. It is just preseason, and Dallas has a plan of giving all their regular players ample rest over the four games before the regular season kicks off. Dorian Finney-Smith, Dwight Powell, and Frank Ntilikina will all sit on Wednesday night putting the Mavericks down two starters, but it provides ample opportunities for others to showcase their skills.

Christmas Day is for the NBA like Thanksgiving for the NFL. Five games from noon to midnight featuring the best teams in the league and the biggest stars. It is the paradise of basketball. Without him, the team is 3 -6 and averaging 1.5 points less per game than its season average. If Kristaps Porzgingis ends up playing Utah , it would be a boost for the Mavericks , but he would have to face the fearsome defense of Gobert and Utah . Dallas is 3 - 3 in its last six games and has a game Thursday night against Milwaukee before facing the Jazz for the first time this season.

So here’s some things to think about prior to the start of what’s going to be an odd Christmas night-cap.

How can the Dallas defense stop the Utah offense?

The gap between the first ranked Utah offense and the second ranked Charlotte Hornets is as wide of a gap as between the Hornets and the Knicks, who are ranked 15th. So how do the Dallas Mavericks find a way to slow down the Jazz scoring all the points?

I have zero idea. The Jazz are very, very good. Perhaps a perfect regular season team in these NBA times. If Dallas is to have any chance, it’ll be because the Jazz are missing shots and disinterested. Or because the fleet of new Dallas players aren’t well scouted and they get the defensive jump on a Utah team.

Are you betting this game? Here are the odds.

I am writing this mainly to Luke Askew and Xavier Santos, our gambling correspondents at Mavs Moneyball: maybe seek some help. If you are betting, click here to see the odds. As of this writing (Christmas Eve, around 5pm CST), the Jazz are 12.5 favorites. That seems like a lot, until you see what the Jazz have done to teams lately.

Warriors gripe about second straight Christmas road game

  Warriors gripe about second straight Christmas road game The Warriors got walloped by the Bucks in Milwaukee on Christmas last year. Playing the Suns in Phoenix in the biggest game of this year’s Christmas schedule tomorrow, Golden State isn’t enthused about being on the road again. Warriors coach Steve Kerr, via Ali Thanawalla of NBC Sports: “Generally, I like playing on Christmas,” Kerr said. “It’s exciting. I love playing at home on Christmas. That way you can still have a good family day. Christmas morning with the kids and then go down to the arena later. It’s tough being on the road for Christmas, but it’s part of being in the NBA.

Mavericks - Clippers: Playoffs Game 3 Observations. Here’s some things to think about today leading up to the game: Rim protection must improve. This is a given, considering all that’s been discussed from both the Mavericks and the Clippers. Los Angeles realized that Dallas stinks at defending the rim and it’s now on the Mavericks It starts with Dorian Finney-Smith not playing on roller skates. It ends with Kristaps Porzingis and Willie Cauley-Stein doing something at the rim on defending shots. Defense is a team effort and all the Dallas players have to try harder. It worked for the Clippers in game three .

Get ready for Jazz vs. Mavericks on Christmas Day (0:49). The Jazz have gone 12- 3 against Western Conference teams. Utah averages 115.8 points while outscoring opponents by 10.4 points per game. The Mavericks are 12-8 in conference matchups. Dallas is 2-2 in one-possession games. TOP PERFORMERS: Donovan Mitchell is scoring 25.1 points per game and averaging 3 .8 rebounds for the Jazz .

If Kristaps Porzingis plays, how will he look on offense?

One of the odder parts about covering Kristaps Porzingis is the tendency to overreact to everything. He’s either terrible or a savant and very little in between. I’ve played a part in that, no doubt. Iztok Franko shared some data the other evening noting how Porzingis has been on a downswing offensively lately.

So with many days of rest for his toe, I’m curious to see his shot and his movement. With Luka Doncic out, his average shot distance changed rather dramatically. The Jazz have a good defense as well, so this might not be the best measuring stick, but I miss seeing him play.

How to watch

This game is on national television on ESPN starting at 9:30 pm CST. A late game. On Christmas. YAY.

Check out DraftKings Sportsbook, the official sportsbook partner of SB Nation.

Recap: Utah defeats Denver 115-109 despite a 26 point, 21 rebound triple-double from Jokic .
The Nuggets showed resolve throughout, but Bojan Bogdanovic’s 36 points proved too much for Denver tonightTonight was one of those games where no matter how close Denver came, they either could not get a stop or score a bucket to obtain the lead. They held the Western Conference player of the month, Donovan Mitchell, to just 17 points on 8-22 shooting and 1-9 from three, but they could stop Bogdanovic at any point in the game. Whenever the Nuggets made their comeback, he responded with a scoring run of his own. He proved once again to be a Nugget killer.

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