Washington Wizards (2-0 SU, 0-2 ATS, 2-0 O/U) at Denver Nuggets (1-1 SU, 1-1 ATS, 0-2 O/U)
When and Where: Monday, Oct. 23, Pepsi Center, Denver, Col, 9pmET
Line: Denver 3
Washington has won their first two games at home this season, including a 115-111 win over Detroit on Friday. Denver is 1-1 after beating Sacramento, 96-79 on Saturday at home. Last season, Washington swept the Nuggets, including defeating them 123-113 on the road.
Wiz win despite the lack of defense
Every season, Washington talks a good game about improving their defense and then they never live up to it. Not having a shotblocking center is part of the problem. But the Wizards perimeter defense is atrocious. In their win over Detroit, they allowed the Pistons to shoot 10-of-23 from beyond the arc and 49.4 percent from the floor overall. Washington had a 15-point lead in the fourth quarter but completely blew the lead. Yet John Wall helped lead the team to the home win with clutch shooting and foul shooting. Wall scored 26 points and dished out eight assists with eight turnovers. Otto Porter Jr. led the Wiz with 28 points and also added nine boards. Guard Brad Beal added 25 points on 9-of-18 shooting and four assists. The Wizards shot 53.3 percent from the floor and 6-of-17 from beyond the arc (35.3%).
Washington’s bench is also an issue. They struggled last season in the playoffs, especially against Boston, getting virtually nothing from their backups. They added Jodie Meeks, who had nine points, Mike Scott (8pts) and point guard Tim Frazier (4 assists, 3 turnovers), who have been solid in the first two games.
Denver’s D looks strong against the Kings
Defense is a foreign word to some teams. Washington is a club that will go as far as that defense takes them. Denver is not a favorite to win the West, but they could make the playoffs if they play as well as they did on Saturday against Sacramento. The Nuggets held the Kings to less than 20 points in each quarter before giving up 27 points in the fourth. Sacramento, who looks awful without DeMarcus Cousins, was held to just 25 points from their five starters. Denver received a strong game from newly-acquired Paul Millsap, who scored 18 points and grabbed nine boards. Kenneth Faried added 18 points and eight boards off the bench.
The bench was spectacular against the Kings. Will Barton added 15 points off the bench as the Nuggets produced 54 points from their bench. They shot 43.5 percent from the field and outrebounded Sacramento 58-39
- 8-3 ATS last 11 after playing on two days rest.
1-4 ATS last 5 vs. Southeast Division.
Denver has the better bench but they don’t have John Wall, Brad Beal or Otto Porter. Washington is just starting a three-game road trip out West and is well-rested. Wall will explode for a big game against the Nuggets.