Denver Nuggets (7-5) vs. Portland Trail Blazers (6-6)
NBA Basketball: Monday November 13th, 10:00 pm EST
The Nuggets head to Portland on Monday night to take on the Trail Blazers. This is a big early season game as these two teams figure to be fighting it out for a few of the last spots in the Western Conference. Both teams have been up and down this year as the Nuggets are 7-5 while the Trail Blazers are 6-6. The Nuggets have a game on Saturday night and will be playing on one day’s rest, while the Trail Blazers are getting a full two day’s of rest.
Denver has played well for the last two weeks with their lone loss to the defending champion Warriors. They have beaten the Raptors, the Heat, the Nets, and the Thunder during that time. Meanwhile, the Trail Blazers have lost two in a row and four of fix. Their last two losses were to the Grizzlies by one and the Nets by four.
Denver is a balanced team
Denver has been pretty balanced on offense this year, six players averaging from between 11.3 and 17.7 points per game. They are led by Nikola Jokic who is at the top with the 17.7 and he’s also putting up 11.6 rebounds per game and 4.4 assists. He even averages 1.25 steals per game. He’s an all around player and one of the best big man in the NBA. He’s shooting 52% from the field and over 40% from three point land. He does it all.
Other big contributors include Paul Milsap who is putting up 15.5 points, 6.3 boards and 2.8 assists, and Will Barton who has looked better than ever this year. He is averaging 14.2 points, a surprising 5.1 rebounds, and 3.0 assists per game. Other players average in double digits are Gary Harris, Emmanuel Mudiay, and Jamal Murray.
Portland is up and down
Portland seems to look good for one week and then fall back to being very beatable the next week. Over their last six games, they have lost two, then won two, and then lost two again. They have one of the best backcourts in basketball, but it’s this lack of consistency that makes me think a #8 seed or a #7 seed is the highest they can achieve. Terry Stotts is a good coach, but I think they could be better.
They are being led by, no surprise, Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum. Lillard is putting up 25.2 points per game, but he’s only shooting 41% from the field and 31% from beyond the arc. He has to start shooting better. McCollum is putting up 22.9 points per game, but shooting better than Lillard. He is at 45% from the field and an impressive 52% from beyond the arc.
The Denver Nuggets are:
- 1-4 ATS in their last 5 road games.
- 1-4 ATS in their last 5 following a 10+ point straight up win
The Portland Trailblazers are:
- 8-2 ATS in their last 10 versus the Northwest
- 13-6-1 ATS in their last 20 when their opponent allowed 20+ points in their last game
I generally like the home team in this matchup. In Denver, I’ll take the home team in the mile high city, but Portland plays much better at home, and this is one of those NBA matchups that seems to favor the home team.