NBA Playoffs Betting Picks: Our Best Bets For Utah Jazz vs. Denver Nuggets (Tuesday, Aug. 25)
Garrett Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images. Pictured: Donovan Mitchell #45 of the Utah Jazz.
Tuesday’s action features to series going in completely directions. The late game will likely catch most of the attention with Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks looking to capitalize on a big Game 4 win and take control of their series against the Los Angeles Clippers.
But the earlier game has seen the Utah Jazz look particularly dominant against the Denver Nuggets with the chance to complete the first round upset as the No. 6 tonight.
So, where’s the value today? Our staff is here to break down their favorite NBA bets for Tuesday’s slate and has found angles in one game:
- 6:30 p.m. ET: Utah Jazz vs. Denver Nuggets
Tuesday NBA Betting Picks
Matt Moore: Jazz vs. Nuggets
|Jazz odds||-2.5 [BET NOW]|
|Nuggets odds||+2.5 [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||-137/+116 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||219.5 [BET NOW]|
|Time||6:30 p.m. ET|
The over has hit on the Jazz’s team total in every game of this series. The Nuggets will have to show me they can stop this team to any noticeable degree for me not to believe the Jazz will put up 120 on them.
I took a modified line at BetMGM at 112.5, a full point higher than their number at 111.5, just so I could get better juice at +100, because I am so confident they are putting up 120 on Denver.
The Jazz have shot unreasonably well, but it’s all due to confidence from the Nuggets’ complete inability to stop them. The Nuggets are broken and likely to crater once the Jazz break this open, but I’m hoping it will be too late then. I’m trusting the trend and fading Denver.
The PICK: Jazz team total over 112.5 (+100)
Raheem Palmer: Jazz vs. Nuggets
The Nuggets are a Donovan Mitchell mental lapse and subsequent eight second backcourt violation away from already being swept.
Outside of Game 3 in which they scored 87 points, the Nuggets’ offense has been everything they’ve needed it to be. They’ve put up an offensive rating of 122.1 and their stars, Jamal Murray and Nikola Jokic, are averaging 28 and 25.3 points per game.
So how is a team that’s scoring 1.21 points every single time up the floor on the verge of being eliminated in five games? Unfortunately, it’s the other side of the court that has doomed their chances at winning this series.
The Nuggets have a 131.1 defensive rating during this series and are allowing the Jazz to shoot a whopping 43.3% from behind the arc. Without their best perimeter defenders in Gary Harris and Will Barton, it’s clear they have no hopes of containing Utah’s backcourt.
Mitchell, Mike Conley and Jordan Clarkson are averaging 39.5, 26.5, and 19.8 points per game respectively for a combined 85.8 points a game with all three shooting over 50% or greater from the field. Although the Nuggets stepped up their defensive intensity and physicality in Game 4, they struggle to defend without fouling. The Jazz had 36 to 13 free throw advantage in Game 4 and have shot 37 more free throws than the Nuggets in this series.
Michael Porter Jr is playing 25.7 minutes per game this series and while they need his offense, the Jazz are ruthlessly attacking him on the defensive end making him all but unplayable. Despite averaging 14.3 points and 5.8 rebounds with a 119 offensive rating in this series, the Nuggets are giving up 129.4 points per 100 possessions while Porter is on the floor — a net negative of -10.2.
Although the Nuggets adjusted in Game 4 by starting Monte Morris and Jerami Grant over Torrey Craig and Michael Porter Jr, their lead deteriorated as soon as those guys went to the bench. The Jazz bench is getting the best of the Nuggets in this series, scoring 37 points per game in this postseason with the Nuggets’ bench scoring 29 per game.
The market thought the Jazz were done without Bojan Bogdanovic pricing them as huge underdogs in this series, but it’s clear they didn’t recognize how big of a loss Harris and Barton would be. Michael Malone complained about the effort from his team in this series after Game 3 and that speaks volumes about the mindset of a team that is in the bubble specifically to play basketball with hopes of winning a championship.
Outside of the Jazz missing makeable shots, I don’t see how the Nuggets survive Game 5. This is a back door sweep and unfortunately Malone might be shown the door.
The Pick: Utah Jazz -2.5
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Brandon Anderson: Jazz vs. Nuggets
Through four games in this series, at least one of the teams has scored 124 points in every game. Actually, through four games, each of these teams has scored at least 124 points in every game except for Denver in Games 2 and 3.
Defense has been optional this series, and usually just discarded all together. Mitchell and Murray have each set franchise scoring records for points in a game. In fact, Mitchell broke Utah’s record coming into the series twice already. He has been more hot than lava, and neither team has any defensive answers for the other.
The Jazz scored at least 120 in all four games, so perhaps you prefer to play the Jazz over 111 line (or over 112.5 like my confident colleague Matt Moore). Just in case the Nuggets show up with a few answers, I prefer the game over to give us a few extra outs.
Go ahead and do the math. If one team scores 124, we only need 96 from the other to hit this over. And unless the Nuggets no-show again like they did in Game 3, that should be very easy. I’d happily play the over to 222, but the line actually appears to be moving the opposite direction. All the better.
The Pick: Over 219.5