Denver Nuggets (50-31) at Los Angeles Clippers (54-25)
NBA Basketball: Saturday, September 5, 2020 at 9:00 pm (AdventHealth Arena)
The Line: Los Angeles Clippers -9 -- Over/Under: 223 Click to Get Latest Betting Odds
The Denver Nuggets and the Los Angeles Clippers duke it out in Game 2 of the Western Semifinals at the HP Field House on Saturday night.
The Denver Nuggets will be looking to bounce back after getting routed by the Clippers in a 120-97 loss on Thursday. Nikola Jokic led the team with 15 points, Paul Millsap added 13 points while Jerami Grant, Jamal Murray and Monte Morris each scored 12 points. As a team, the Nuggets shot just 42 percent from the field and nine of 36 from the 3-point line as they came out blazing to match the Clippers with 31 points in the first quarter, before getting absolutely blown out in the second quarter by 38-20. The Nuggets couldn’t mount any real comeback as their perimeter shots just weren’t dropping and they couldn’t do much to slow the Clippers on the defensive end either.
Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Clippers will be growing in confidence after taking care of business in Game 1. Kawhi Leonard led the way with 29 points on 12 of 16 shooting, Paul George added 19 points with seven rebounds and four assists, while Marcus Morris Sr. chipped in with 18 points on seven of 10 shooting. As a team, the Clippers shot a sizzling 57 percent from the field and 10 of 24 from the 3-point line as they took control of the game in the second quarter, before cruising in the second half. Patrick Beverley was impactful in his short stint as he finished with eight points, six rebounds and two assists in his 12 minutes, while Montrezl Harrell had 15 points in 19 minutes off the bench.
Looking at the betting trends, the Nuggets are 9-4 ATS in their last 13 Conference Semifinals games, 2-5-1 ATS in their last eight games playing on one days rest and 15-7-2 ATS in their last 24 games following a loss. The Clippers are 4-0 ATS in their last four games following a win of more than 10 points, 9-2 ATS in their last 11 games against a team with a winning record and 4-1 ATS in their last five games overall.
Head to head, the under is 38-18 in the last 56 meetings overall and the Nuggets are 2-7 ATS in the last nine meetings in Los Angeles.
The Nuggets needed to come out firing to have a chance in Game 1 and they did a nice job of matching the Clippers. However, it was one-way traffic in favor of the Clippers from that point onwards as they looked comfortable on the offensive end, especially Leonard who didn’t break a sweat on his way to a game-high 29 points. I’m expecting a much better contest from the Nuggets in this one, but I don’t think it’ll matter as the Clippers are 13-1 on the season when they have a full team and I think that trend continues here.