If you had told most Dallas Mavericks fans that Luka Doncic, Spencer Dinwiddie and Jalen Brunson were going to combine for 86 points in Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals against the Golden State Warriors on Sunday (which they did), those Mavs fans surely would have though the team would win. Dallas didn't because the rest of the club scored only 14. Off his 26-point effort, Dinwiddie is given a smallish over/under total of 13.5 points tonight at Caesars Sportsbook for Game 4 as the Mavs try to avoid a sweep. It also could be Brunson's final game with the club that drafted him No. 33 overall in 2018.
At least when everyone is healthy, Dinwiddie comes off the bench and he was 7-for-13 from the floor and 4-for-10 from deep in Game 3 for his 26 points, the second-best scoring effort of his postseason career. His high was 30 in the shocking Game 7 rout in Phoenix in the West semifinals. The midseason trade acquisition has been wildly inconsistent in the postseason with six games scoring in single-digit points, including only four in Game 2 at Golden State.
Dinwiddie is averaging 15.7 ppg in this series and 13.7 in this postseason. Dallas probably isn't winning tonight unless he tops the 13.5 betting number at Caesars with the way guys like Reggie Bullock and Maxi Kleber are struggling from the field. They were a combined 0-for-15 in Game 3 for zero points in 65 total minutes. That's tough to do. No props on Kleber, but Bullock is set at Over/Under 10.5 points.
Brunson is given a total of 20.5 points off his 20-point effort in Game 3, and this could be his final game in a Mavericks uniform as Brunson is set for unrestricted free agency – and his price has gone up in these playoffs. Most around the league expect Dallas to re-sign him, but there are teams out there with plenty of salary-cap space that may make a run: NBA insider Marc Stein specifically mentioned Detroit and Indiana.
The New York Knicks also are known to be looking for a point guard and Brunson's father, Rick, was Knicks president Leon Rose's first client when Rose was an NBA agent. Rose also represented Jalen Brunson on his rookie contract. Rose's son, Sam, is one of the CAA agents who represents Brunson now.
The Mavs do re-sign Brunson, they will go deep into the luxury tax as six Dallas players (Tim Hardaway Jr., Dinwiddie, Davis Bertans, Dorian Finney-Smith, Dwight Powell and Bullock) are already on the books for between $10 million and $20 million in 2022-23. The Mavericks have Brunson's Bird rights, so they can give him a five-year deal while other teams are limited to four-year offers.
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