Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#539 Denver Nuggets -4 vs.
#540 Brooklyn Nets 209
Sunday, December 8, 2019 at 3:05pm EST
Barclays Center , Brooklyn
Written by Chris Kubala

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#539 Denver
#540 Brooklyn
14-6
12-10
49-47
46-41
44-52
42-44-1
110
112
106
112

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It’s an interconference matchup on the hardwood in the Big Apple between a pair of teams looking to earn a victory. The Denver Nuggets are on the road as they travel cross-country to face the Brooklyn Nets Sunday afternoon. Denver was knocked off 108-95 on the road by Boston Friday night in their last game. Brooklyn earned their second straight win as they defeated Charlotte 111-104 on the road Friday night in their last contest. The Nuggets own a 50-41 advantage in the all-time regular season series, including a 101-93 home win in the first matchup this season on November 14.

Denver Nuggets Look to Bounce Back to Win Column

Denver lost for the third time in four games as they were upended by Boston in their last contest in the second game of a back to back. The Nuggets entered Saturday holding a three-game lead over the Jazz in the Northwest Division race. Denver never led Friday night as Boston jumped on the tired visitors from the opening tip. The Nuggets trailed by seven after the opening quarter and by eight at the half before getting outscored 32-19 in the third to put the game out of reach. Denver shot 41.5 percent from the field, including five of 30 from three-point range, while allowing Boston to shoot 53.7 percent in the contest. Nikola Jokic led the Nuggets with 30 points and 10 rebounds.

The Nuggets enter this contest 22nd in the league by averaging 106.7 points per game on the year. Denver is 7th in rebounding by collecting 46.7 boards per night and 5th in assists by dishing out 26.1 dimes a night. The Nuggets are 1st in the league in scoring defense as they allow 101.8 points per contest this season. Jamal Murray leads the team with 18.1 points plus 4.4 rebounds and 4.8 assists per contest this season. Nikola Jokic contributes 15.7 points, 10.1 rebounds and 6.1 assists a night. Will Barton (14.4 points, 6.7 rebounds), Gary Harris (10.7 points), Paul Millsap (13.3 points) and Malik Beasley are solid contributors. Jerami Grant, Mason Plumlee, Monte Morris and Juan Hernangomez are key bench pieces for Mike Malone’s group. Denver is tied for 18th in the league in field goal percentage as they shoot 44.9 percent from the floor as a team this season. The Nuggets are 24th in the league in threes per game as they knock 10.5 triples per contest while the team is 22nd in three-point shooting by hitting 34.8 percent from beyond the arc.

Brooklyn Nets Try to Continue Momentum Without Irving

Brooklyn won their second straight and their eighth in their last 11 games as they downed the Hornets on the road Friday night. The Nets entered Saturday fourth in the Atlantic Division, 4.5 games behind the Celtics. Brooklyn led by three after the first quarter and by two at the half Friday night. The game was tied with 34.4 seconds to play in the third quarter before the Nets went on a 14-0 run, holding the Hornets scoreless for the first five-plus minutes in the fourth quarter to take control. Brooklyn’s lead didn’t drop below seven the rest of the way. The Nets shot 47.7 percent from the field, including 15 of 38 from three-point range, and controlled the glass 49-34. Joe Harris led Brooklyn with 22 points in the win.

The Nets enter this contest 11th in the league by averaging 113 points per game on the year. Brooklyn is sixth in the league in rebounding by pulling down 47.2 boards a night while they are 14th by dishing out 24.4 assists per game. The Nets are a dismal 20th in scoring defense as they allow 113.4 points per game this year. Kyrie Irving leads the team with 28.5 points, 5.4 rebounds and 7.2 assists a night on the season. Caris LeVert chips in 16.8 points per contest while Spencer Dinwiddie contributes 20.5 points and 6.1 assists a game. Joe Harris (14.9 points) and Taurean Prince (13.6 points, six rebounds) are solid contributors while Jarrett Allen (12 points, 10.5 rebounds) is starting to wrest time away from DeAndre Jordan. Brooklyn is tied for 16th in field goal percentage by shooting 45.3 percent from the field as a team this season. The Nets are 6th in threes per game by knocking down 13.3 triples per contest while ranking tied for 16th in the league by hitting 35.4percent from beyond the arc on the year. LeVert is out after thumb surgery. He has shed his cast and is getting ready to start his rehab process. Irving is dealing with a shoulder impingement that has cost him the last 11 games: he has no timetable for return and won’t play here.

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Brooklyn has won eight of their last 11 games, which is the extent of the games they’ve played since their first meeting with the Nuggets. That’s the last game Irving took the floor as he suffered the shoulder injury that has knocked him out of the lineup. Denver has struggled with three losses in their last four games and they’ll play their third game in four days here. The Nuggets have quality depth but fatigue is going to be a factor. Brooklyn is getting a chance to showcase their guys that carried the team last season before the big free-agent signings. Look for the Nets to take advantage of home court advantage to deliver a tough win here.

Prediction: Brooklyn Nets +3.5

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Denver has been decent on the road this season, going 6-3 coming into this contest. The Nuggets average 106.6 ppg as the visiting team on the year while allowing 101.7 ppg this season in those games. That puts their average total on the road at 208.3 ppg this season. Brooklyn is 6-4 at home this season coming into the game. The Nets average 112.6 ppg at home this season while giving up 111.4 ppg in those outings. That gives the average home game for Brooklyn putting up 224 points per game. We saw the first meeting between the teams in the Mile High City total only 194 points: will things be drastically different in Brooklyn?

The under is 4-0 in the Nuggets' last 4 games following a straight up loss of more than 10 points, 4-0 in their last 4 road games vs. a team with a winning home record and 4-1 in their last five overall. Brooklyn has seen the under go 5-1-1 in their last seven after a straight up win and 4-1 in their last 5 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of greater than .600 on the season. Denver's defense is stingy regardless of rest or venue: that helps keep this one under the mark.

Prediction: Under 209.5

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Denver comes into this game with a +1.2 ppg scoring differential in the opening half of games this season. That mark puts the Nuggets 13th in the league in that category this season. Brooklyn owns a +2.5 ppg scoring differential in the opening half of their contests this year. That puts the Nets ninth in the league in that department on the year. Brooklyn is at home with the rest factor in their pocket. The Nets get the upper hand at the half in a close game.

Prediction: Brooklyn Nets

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Brooklyn stands ninth in the league in scoring offense this season in the first half with 57 ppg on the year. The Nets are 15th in scoring defense as they allow 54.5 ppg in the first half on the year. That puts their season average for the first half at 111.5 ppg so far. Denver stands only tied for 24th in first half scoring by putting up 52.5 ppg this season. The Nuggets rely on defense as they are second in first half scoring defense by allowing 51.3 ppg in the opening 24 minutes. That sets up an average of 103.8 ppg in the first half this season when they are on the floor. Look for this one to fall a few points short of the mark at the half.

Prediction: Under
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Written By Chris Kubala

Christopher Kubala has been crunching stats and following sports for over 30 years. His in-depth analysis and passion for sports have led him to writing books about sports, regularly being featured on sports talk radio and as the go-to person for any obscure trivia. Now he is writing for our team here at Winners @ Whiners. Chris keeps an eye on transactions and statistics like a hawk, especially when it comes to football, both the NFL and college. He is also very knowledgeable in the NHL, the NBA, college basketball and MLB. If you want consistency, then be sure and check out Chris’ content daily.