Throughout the NBA postseason, I’ll dabble in game-by-game betting breakdowns. Let’s dive into NBA bets for Game 2 of the Warriors-Nuggets series. You can find the rest of tonight’s NBA odds here.
Warriors vs. Nuggets: Game 2 Odds
Golden State trounced Denver in Game 1 of this seven-game series, manufacturing 1.23 points per possession (PPP) in a 123-107 win. Within the Warriors’ high-rated efficiency, they shot 45.7% from behind the arc. Will that carry over into Game 2?
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Examining Nuggets’ Perimeter Defense
According to ShotQuality, Steve Kerr’s unit was expected to score 12 fewer points via 3-point land on Saturday. But the Nuggets have showcased effective off-ball defense on catch-and-shoot shots from distance throughout the campaign.
Additionally, they’ve been even more efficient against off-the-dribble 3s. Despite Jokic struggling in ball-screen coverage, expect a crisper showing at that end of the floor — coupled with Golden State naturally regressing in that department.
On top of that, Warriors guard Steph Curry (foot) only played 22 minutes in Game 1, shooting 5-of-13 from the the field. Kerr wouldn’t go in-depth on whether the two-time MVP would be limited once again, yet there’s a decent chance Golden State doesn’t take any chances after just one day off.
Both teams aim to speed up the pace, yet Denver’s prowess on the defensive boards should generate more of its own transition opportunities if its 3-point defense improves.
Playing Through Jokic
Kerr’s “death lineup” featuring Curry, Klay Thompson, Jordan Poole, Andrew Wiggins and Draymond Green was instrumental offensively in their 16-point victory. But this group, along with Golden State collectively, struggles to defend post-ups.
In fact, Western Conference teams tallied the eighth-most efficient shots via post-up sets against the Warriors. Well, Denver runs the league’s highest post-up rate, thanks to Jokic, who closed the MVP favorite at the end of the regular season.
If the 6-foot-11 point center establishes himself throughout the first half to avoid another ruthless, double-digit Warriors’ run, the Nuggets’ perimeter attack should open up a bit. They shot just 31.4% from deep on Saturday.
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Warriors – Nuggets Conclusion
Although the betting market hasn’t gifted us much value after Denver closed as a 6.5-point underdog in Game 1, look for Michael Malone’s crew to at least hang within two possessions in this one.
Eli’s NBA Bets: Nuggets +7 (-110 on FanDuel Sportsbook)
Best Available Line: Nuggets