The Chicago Bulls are locked into the No. 10 seed in the Eastern Conference heading into their matchup with the Dallas Mavericks on Friday night.
Dallas needs to win out to have a shot at the No. 10 seed in the West, but it seems like the team isn’t completely set on that, as several key players are missing tonight’s contest.
The Mavs’ draft pick this season is top-10 protected, so the team may want to finish with a worse record to keep the pick since the playoffs are going to be hard to reach anyway.
Luka Doncic is still listed as probable for this game, while the Bulls have Alex Caruso, DeMar DeRozan and Zach LaVine listed as questionable.
Here’s a look at the latest odds:
Bulls vs. Mavericks odds, spread and total
Bulls vs. Mavericks prediction and pick
While Doncic may still play, I think Dallas would prefer to lose this game.
With the Oklahoma City Thunder winning on Thursday, Dallas can’t control its own destiny for the No. 10 seed, and it likely would rather have a top-10 pick in the upcoming draft.
It’s a tough look for a team that traded assets for Kyrie Irving at the deadline.
The Bulls don’t have anything to play for in this game, but I think they at least keep it close given the state of the Mavericks.
Dallas has completely tanked in the second half of the season, playing like one of the worst defenses in the NBA.
Even if Chicago plays mainly its bench, it should be able to hang around within 7.5 points.
Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.