The NBA Playoffs continue on Friday as the Denver Nuggets (53-29) visit the Minnesota Timberwolves (42-40) for the third game in the Western Conference first round. Action tips off at 9:30 p.m. ET. Denver took a 2-0 series lead thanks to their 122-113 win in game two. Below we continue our NBA odds series with a Nuggets-Timberwolves prediction, pick, and how to watch.
Here are the Nuggets-Timberwolves NBA odds, courtesy of FanDuel
NBA Playoffs Odds: Nuggets-Timberwolves Odds
Denver Nuggets: -2.5 (-110)
Minnesota Timberwolves: +2.5 (-110)
Over: 223 (-110)
Under: 223 (-110)
How To Watch Nuggets vs. Timberwolves
TV: ESPN, ESPN Deportes
Time: 9:30 p.m. ET/ 6:30 p.m. PT
*Watch NBA games LIVE with fuboTV (click for a free trial)*
Why The Nuggets Could Cover The Spread
ATS Record: 46-37-1 (55%)
Over Record: 39-44-1 (47%)
After crushing the Timberwolves by 29 points in the series opener, the Nuggets “regressed” in game two… by beating the Timberwolves by nine points. Having covered both games thus far, Denver looks to be an enticing spread play as just a 2.5-point favorite in game two. While they were known for their offense during the regular season, the Nuggets have relied on their defense thus far in the postseason. They held Minnesota to just 80 and 113 in the first two games and will need to bring that same intensity to game three. Additionally, the Nuggets did struggle in Minnesota during the regular season with two double-digit losses in which they gave up over 120 in both games. That being said, the Nuggets looked very impressive in game two but will need their two stars to continue to ball out in game three.
Point guard Jamal Murray continues to look more and more like “bubble Murray” in this year’s playoffs. The 26-year-old lit the bubble on fire just in the 2019-20 playoffs as he averaged 26.5 PPG while shooting 51% overall and 45% from three. After missing last year’s playoffs with an injury, Murray looks better than ever this season. He put up 24 points and eight assists in game one before exploding for 40 points in game two. Minnesota had no answer for him on the defensive end as Murray shot 59% overall and got to the free-throw line nine times. While another 40-point game may be a lot to ask, he improved as the season went on and looked especially impressive down the stretch. Although he was held to 14 points in his lone visit up north this season, look for another big night.
Two-time reigning MVP Nikola Jokic hasn’t lit the playoffs on fire just yet but he continues to look like the best player on the floor. Jokic dropped 27 points, nine rebounds, and nine assists in game two after a quiet game one performance. The Joker has looked almost bored at times during this series as he effortlessly drops near-triple-doubles on a nightly basis. Although he differed to Murray in the first two games, expect his counting stats to improve in game three. After 29 triple-doubles in the regular season, Jokic is still searching for his first in the playoffs. Doing so would go a long way to ensuring the Nuggets can cover on the road in game three.
Why The Timberwolves Could Cover The Spread
ATS Record: 42-44 (49%)
Over Record: 40-46 (47%)
Minnesota looked better in game two but given their opening performance that isn’t saying much. After scoring just 80 points in the opener, the Timberwolves offense finally got going as they dropped 113 in game two. However, their defense wasn’t up to par as they allowed 122 after holding the Nuggets to 109 in the opener. Still, there is hope for a bounce back in game three after they dominated Denver at home during the regular season. They won both home games by double-digits thanks to holding Denver to 98 and 111. That being said, they’ll need their offense to continue to build momentum if they want to keep up with the Nuggets’ high-powered attack.
Despite their game-three loss, hope exists for Minnesota thanks to Anthony Edwards’ game two performance. Edwards did not look like himself during both of their play-in games and in game one. He averaged just 15.3 PPG after scoring 24.6 PPG in the regular season. He made up for it in game two, dropping an eye-popping 41 points on 61% shooting. Denver struggled to defend opposing wings all season long and it showed with their defense on ANT. He effortlessly got to the rim and was red-hot from deep – draining the most three since January. Edwards averaged nearly three points per game more at home this season and thus should build on his game-two outburst.
Final Nuggets-Timberwolves Prediction & Pick
Minnesota looked better in game two but they stand no match for Denver.
Final Nuggets-Timberwolves Prediction & Pick: Denver Nuggets -2.5 (-110)
The post NBA Playoffs Odds: Nuggets vs. Timberwolves Game 3 prediction, pick, how to watch – 4/21/2023 appeared first on ClutchPoints.