The Denver Nuggets went down 3-1 for a second straight playoff series against the Los Angeles Clippers in the second round, but they’ve battled back to force a Game 7 by securing two straight victories once again. The closeout game is set for Tuesday, and the winner will take on the Los Angeles Lakers in the Western Conference finals.
The Clippers have long been among the favorites to compete for a title. Kawhi Leonard and Paul George have been formidable two-way stars, but Los Angeles is more than just them. Lou Williams and Montrezl Harrell provide a dangerous scoring punch off the bench, giving them four players who averaged more than 18 points per game during the regular season.
The Nuggets’ depth was cut short at the start of the NBA’s restart, as Jamal Murray, Gary Harris, and Will Barton were injured when seeding games began. Michael Porter Jr. emerged as a young talent with tons of scoring upside when given the opportunity to earn more playing time to earn a place in Denver’s rotation. That made the Nuggets more dangerous when Murray returned to form an electric big two alongside Nikola Jokic. Can this trio carry enough of a scoring load to take down the Clippers in a must-win?
Game Time/TV Channel/Streaming
Tuesday’s game will take place at 9:00 p.m. ET. The game will be broadcasted on ESPN.
Point Spread, Totals, Odds
Point spread: Clippers (-7.5)
Point Total: O/U 207.5
Money line: Clippers (-305), Nuggets (+250)
The Best Bet: Nikola Jokic over 11.5 rebounds (-110)
The Clippers don’t have an answer for Jokic on the boards, and the big man is averaging 12 rebound per game against Los Angeles. The tallied just three rebounds in his team’s blowout loss in Game 1 but that performance is an outlier we shouldn’t pay attention to. If we take away that game, Jokic is averaging 13.8 rebounds per game in the series. He’ll play as many minutes as it takes to get a win, so expect him to get more exposure on Tuesday.
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