NBA Betting Odds, Picks and Predictions: Nuggets vs. Thunder (Monday, August 3)
Getty Images. Pictured (L-R): Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic, OKC Thunder guard Chris Paul.
- The Thunder are the favorite in Monday's NBA matchup against the short-handed Nuggets.
- Joe Dellera likes the Thunder at -4.5 and would take them up to -6.
- Check out his full betting analysis below.
Nuggets vs. Thunder Betting Odds
|Nuggets odds||+6 [BET NOW]|
|Thunder odds||-6 [BET NOW]|
|Moneyline||-240/+195 [BET NOW]|
|Over/Under||219.5 [BET NOW]|
|Time||4 p.m. ET|
Can the Nuggets bounce back after an embarrassing opening loss to the Miami Heat or will the Thunder keep the pressure on after a statement win against the Utah Jazz?
The Nuggets have been hit hard with the injury bug and one has to wonder if the delay in some players entering the bubble had an effect on their conditioning and health.
I’m not entirely sure what coach Mike Malone means when he describes Jamal Murray as “very questionable,” but considering he missed the Nugget’s last game, he is listed as “doubtful.” Jamal Murray has said that his hamstring has been bothering since the team first arrived in Orlando so even if he does play, do not expect him to be nearly as spry as usual. Will Barton and Gary Harris also missed Denver’s first matchup in Orlando, and will be out again Monday night.
The Nuggets need Nikola Jokic to step up and have a monster game on the interior to win this game. Per Cleaning the Glass, when Murray, Harris and Barton are not on the court, the Nuggets have a Net Rating of -8. This is a departure from their +6.1 Net Rating when all three are on the court.
Without Murray, Harris and Barton, the Nuggets’ offense suffers. Without those three on the court they turn the ball over at an absolutely unacceptable rate. Per NBA.com and Cleaning the Glass, the Nuggets turned the ball over on 19.2% of possessions in their first bubble game and 16.7% of possessions this season without Murray, Harris and Barton on the court. This is a stark departure from their 11th-best turnover rate (14%) overall this season. If they are unable to protect the basketball, the Nuggets will gift the Thunder with easy transition opportunities.
Oklahoma City Thunder
The Thunder are fresh off a strong win against the Jazz and a win over the Nuggets would make the race for the West’s No. 3 seed much more interesting.
The Thunder are fundamentally sound. Per Cleaning the Glass, they are a top-10 team in limiting turnovers, effective field goal percentage, and getting to the free throw line. On the other side of the ball, the Thunder commit the 4th-fewest fouls in the league and give up the least points to opponents on the fast break.
By limiting mistakes and leaning on strong guard play, the Thunder have been a surprise in the Western Conference. Lineups with Chris Paul, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, and Dennis Schroder have an eye-popping +31.4 Net Rating, according to data from Cleaning the Glass. Considering the Nuggets are missing their starting guards, expect this trio to run the court and dictate the pace.
Betting Analysis & Pick
It has been profitable to bet on the Thunder off an Against the Spread (ATS) win. Per Betlabs, the Thunder are 11-4 ATS in this situation.
I expect the Thunder to take care of business against a short-handed Nuggets team. The Nuggets’ frontcourt will be vulnerable against one of the top trios (at least via advanced stats) in the NBA.
The Pick: Thunder -4.5, would take up to -6.