Only one game in the NBA for Wednesday night, as the Nuggets look to avoid a 2-0 deficit in Game 2 in Phoenix. Let’s focus in on some different ways to bet this game depending on the final injury report.
Follow along on Twitter — @julianedlow — for what we hope to be a great postseason. Here’s what jumps out to me on DraftKings Sportsbook.
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Denver Nuggets at Phoenix Suns
PHX -5 (-115)
Game 1 stayed close in the first half before the Suns really broke things open, leading to an eventual 17-point victory. I’m still debating if I’ll actually get in on this game myself, but if I do, it’s Suns or pass. Chris Paul looked completely healthy in Game 1, and his impact against a backcourt of backup guards was noticeable. De’Andre Ayton posted a 20-point, 10-rebound game, and has actually averaged 21.5 points and 11.8 boards in four games against Denver this season — consider backing him to go over 27.5 points, rebounds and assists. Phoenix got a below average game from Devin Booker, who can go off at anytime, and still dominated.
While Will Barton (hamstring) has been upgraded to questionable, he hasn’t played in about six weeks, and likely won’t be able to make a huge impact. Michael Porter Jr. (back) is also questionable, and even if he plays, back injuries have played a major role in derailing his career. I don’t expect MPJ to be near 100%, helping push me onto Phoenix.
Nuggets Player Props
So we know Barton and MPJ are both questionable, leaving a couple of bets based on different scenarios.
Both play: I feel this is the most likely outcome, and if it’s the case, I’ll look to play Porter Jr. under 27.5 points, rebounds and assists along with Austin Rivers under 9.5 points. In MPJ’s case, he’s really struggled with back injuries for years, and I’d expect it to hamper him on the floor. He’s stayed under this mark in four of his last six games this postseason, including an under in Game 1 of this series. We also have to factor in Barton taking away some usage by coming back into the rotation. Rivers has only scored in double-figures in two of seven postseason games, and he played over 37 minutes in both games. I lean to the under here even in his normal role, but Rivers probably loses the most minutes to Barton in a scenario where he’s returned.
Porter Jr. is ruled out: No reason to sweat any unders if we know MPJ won’t be on the floor, as there will be plenty of shots to go around. But the one healthy player that could step up is Aaron Gordon over 12.5 points. AG scored 18 points in 29 minutes in Game 1, and we’d likely see some extra run here, even if Barton were to play. Gordon has gone over this mark in six of Denver’s seven playoff games already, presenting a nice edge if a shooter like MPJ were held out.
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