San Antonio Spurs at Denver Nuggets
|Date & Time||Tuesday April 16, 2019, 9:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Denver -6.5 -- Over/Under 208
The San Antonio Spurs and the Denver Nuggets collide in Game 2 of the NBA Western Conference Playoffs at the Pepsi Center on Tuesday night.
The San Antonio Spurs will be looking to take a commanding 2-0 series lead after upsetting the second-seeded Nuggets in a 101-96 upset win in Game 1. DeMar DeRozan led the team with 18 points, 12 rebounds and six assists, Derrick White added 16 points with five assists while LaMarcus Aldridge and Bryn Forbes each scored 15 points. As a team, the Spurs shot 48 percent from the field and seven of 15 from the 3-point line, but the key to the win was always defense as the Spurs set the tone by holding the Nuggets to just 20 points in the first quarter and 17 points in the third quarter before sealing the win with a steal to the Nuggets’ last possession. It wasn’t the prettiest of games, but the Spurs came out playing like the more desperate team and they will be thrilled with stealing home-court advantage
Meanwhile, the Denver Nuggets came into the playoffs with plenty of momentum and confidence, but they will be looking to bounce back after getting ambushed in Game 1. Gary Harris led the team in scoring with 20 points on seven of 12 shooting, Jamal Murray added 17 points with six steals, Will Barton added 15 points with 10 rebounds while Nikola Jokic racked up a triple-double of 10 points with 14 rebounds and 14 assists. As a team, the Nuggets shot 42 percent from the field and six of 28 from the 3-point line but they will be ruing their missed chances after surrendering home-court advantage so easily. Jokic finished with another impressive triple-double, but he shot just four of nine from the field while Murray shot eight of 24, so both players will need to be more efficient in Game 2.
Looking at the betting trends, the Spurs are 5-1-1 ATS in their last seven games against a team with a winning record, 6-2-1 ATS in their last nine road games and 8-3 ATS in their last 11 games playing on two days rest. The Nuggets are 2-6 ATS in their last eight home games, 1-5 ATS in their last six home games against a team with a losing road record and 0-8 ATS in their last eight Conference Quarterfinals games.
Head to head, the road team is 29-13 ATS in the last 42 meetings, the under is 5-0 in the last five meetings and the Spurs are 22-8 ATS in the last 30 meetings in Denver.
The Nuggets will surely come out guns blazing as they won’t want to drop both home games to start the series, but the Spurs’ experience came to the forefront in Game 1 and I wouldn’t be shocked if they pulled off the upset again. Even with Murray struggling with his shot as he made just eight of 24 from the field, the Nuggets were still in the contest which will give them plenty of confidence. The Spurs are 6-2-1 ATS in their last nine road games and 22-8 ATS in the last 30 meetings in Denver, so while I have the Nuggets levelling the series here, I like the Spurs to get the cover.