Thursday night in the NBA features two of the top-five teams in the Western Conference squaring off. There’s a strong case to be made that it’s a game between two of the most surprising teams out West as well and should be a great matchup. Both the Los Angeles Clippers (24-16) and Denver Nuggets (27-12) have played well as of late, leading to each team exceeding early expectations.
The teams recently met on December 22 in a game played in Los Angeles which the Clippers won 132-111, so the Nuggets will now push to get some revenge. Denver comes in with a 16-3 home record and has won six of their last seven games. The Clippers have their own winning streak going currently, winning three in a row all by double digits.
Let’s take a look at the latest betting line, odds and a prediction on the Clippers vs. Nuggets matchup, which has only seen a small amount of movement from the opening numbers.
Clippers vs. Nuggets Betting Line & Projected Total
- Denver Nuggets: -6 (-105), opened at -5
- Over/Under: 227 (-110), opened at 226
The early expectation seems to be that the Nuggets will continue their hot play at home against the Clippers. As Odds Shark reveals, 60 percent of the public is currently on the Nuggets with the line floating around -5.5 to -6 depending on the site. The over is also getting a decent amount of love, with 63 percent of people going in that direction.
Although the Clippers took the last matchup between the two teams, Denver won the previous one by a score of 107-98. That game was also played in Los Angeles so this will be the first game of this series played in Denver since February 27, 2018, per Land of Basketball. As seen above, the last matchup would have cleared the current projected total with ease, but the one prior wouldn’t have come close.
Clippers vs. Nuggets Prediction & Pick
I expect Denver to keep the strong play at home rolling and to get the best of the Clippers here. It’ll likely be close throughout the first three quarters, but the Nuggets run away with it late thanks to their defense. On the season, the Nuggets have allowed the fourth-fewest points per game at 105.5, which also bodes well for the under.
Between the two bets, I think the Nuggets with the points is better than the projected total, as the Clippers haven’t been excellent on the defensive end this year. Preferably, I’d focus on the line and consider the total as a secondary play.
Pick: Nuggets -6 and under 227