Nuggets vs Lakers: Game 3 Prediction, Odds, Pick (Thursday, April 25)

Nuggets vs Lakers: Game 3 Prediction, Odds, Pick (Thursday, April 25) article feature image

Pictured: Jamal Murray of the Nuggets and D’Angelo Russell of the Lakers for Action Network’s odds, picks, and predictions for Action Network’s odds, picks, and predictions for Game 3.

Nuggets vs. Lakers Odds

Thursday, April 25
10:00 p.m. ET
Nuggets Odds
Lakers Odds
Odds via FanDuel. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

Here's everything you need to know about Nuggets vs. Lakers on Thursday, April 25 — our expert prediction and betting picks for today's game.

After an epic finish to Game 2, I’m still trying to recover. Jamal Murray’s game-winner sent the Lakers back to Los Angeles down 0-2, despite 26 first-half points from Anthony Davis and lights-out shooting from D’Angelo Russell. LeBron James also had an excellent game, but even near-perfect basketball wasn’t enough for the Lakers to leave Denver with a win.

The Lakers will try to take two games in Los Angeles, or this series is likely over.

Denver Nuggets

The Lakers pulled out all the stops in Game 2 and it looked like they might pull off an upset, but the Nuggets came storming back. Murray, who was just 3-for-16 going into the fourth quarter, went 6-for-8 in the final frame, including an incredible game-winner.

In a rare turn of events, the Nuggets' bench had a higher plus-minus than the starters. Nikola Jokic was the only Nuggets starter in the positive, and he was just +1. However, that’s more about the Lakers' starters outplaying their counterparts than it is the bench playing incredibly well. Christian Braun had a decent game with 10 points on an efficient 5-for-8 shooting, but was 0-for-3 from deep, extending his playoff streak without a 3 to 16 games.

A better stat to consider is Box Plus-Minus, which isolates a player’s points contribution per 100 possession. From that perspective, Jokic and Michael Porter Jr. had the biggest impact for Denver.

Porter Jr. was lights out, going 8-for-13 from the field, including 6-for-10 from deep. He also continued his usual domination of the glass against the Lakers and grabbed nine rebounds.

Los Angeles Lakers

James had an exceptional game despite the loss, and we might have been saying the same for Davis had he not had an abysmal second half. The Lakers seemed to run out of gas in the second half. It seemed clear that the altitude got to them, or perhaps their conditioning just isn’t where it needs to be to compete with the Nuggets, who are fully adjusted to the elevation.

Russell, after an abysmal showing in Game 1, had 23 points on 8-for-16 shooting and was an insane 7-for-11 from deep. He also tacked on six assists.

It took an incredible effort from the Lakers' three best scorers, who combined for 81 of Los Angeles' 99 points … and the game still sailed under the total of 223.

Nuggets vs. Lakers

Betting Pick & Prediction

The market appears keen on the Lakers in Game 3. Just 29% of the tickets are on Los Angeles, but the Lakers are getting 50% of the money. This is a classic spot to back a team coming home down 0-2, but it's worrisome that the Lakers lost despite such a strong performance in Game 2. Perhaps in front of the home crowd they’ll have more luck, but I’m staying away from a side in Game 3 — at least for now.

Points could be coming at a premium in this series, despite both offenses being the better unit for either squad. The pace (93.8) is the main reason both games have gone under, and there’s a trend that almost fits this game, but that'll will depend on the closing line.

Because the number is shifting from pick ‘em to Denver being favored, this trend might not apply, but it’s one I’ll keep my eye on. Follow me in the app and on X (@nbaWatts) to see how/if I play the total.

For now, I’ll take Porter Jr. to exceed his rebounds prop and Braun to go under his 3s prop. Braun hasn’t made a 3 in 16 straight playoff games and I think he’s less likely to do so in front of a hostile crowd on the road.

Porter Jr. has exceeded 6.5 or more rebounds in 11 straight games against the Lakers, so I’ll ride that trend as well. It’s moving up to 7.5 at some books and I like it there at -125 or better.

Pick: Christian Braun Under .5 3s Made | Michael Porter Jr. Over 6.5 Rebounds

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