The West-leading Denver Nuggets are playing smooth as of late, while the Dallas Mavericks are losers of back-to-back. The Nuggets, however, are down in the season series, 2-1, and the Mavs now have Kyrie Irving on deck.
Catch the game tomorrow at 10:00 AM, Manila time.
HOME: Denver Nuggets (40-18, 26-4 HOME)
Projected starting five:
- Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
- Bruce Brown
- Michael Porter Jr.
- Vlatko Cancar
- Nikola Jokic
The Nuggets sit atop the Western Conference for a good reason, and it’s evident in their current run. They enter tomorrow’s contest having won six of their last eight games, where they have a +6.9 net rating while scoring 120.4 points on 52.8% shooting.
In his continuous campaign for a three-peat MVP, Nikola Jokic put on quite the show in Tuesday’s win over the Miami Heat. In 33 brilliant minutes, he had 27 points, 12 rebounds, and eight assists on 12-for-14 shooting, and get this: zero turnovers. He’ll look to repeat that performance tomorrow, especially since this will only be his second game in the season series and his sweet-shooting point guard, Jamal Murray, is still questionable with a banged up knee.
It shouldn’t be that huge of a concern, though. Aaron Gordon, Michael Porter Jr., Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, and Bruce Brown are a good bunch of secondary weapons. Gordon had 27 points in their recent meeting with the Mavs.
The Nuggets are 4-0 ATS in their last four home games.
AWAY: Dallas Mavericks (31-28, 12-18 AWAY)
Projected starting five:
- Kyrie Irving
- Josh Green
- Reggie Bullock
- Luka Doncic
- Dwight Powell
The Mavericks are now 0-2 in the games that Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving played together. It’s clear that the team is still adjusting to the new tandem, particularly the two All-Stars. It was in full display in Tuesday’s 124-121 defeat to the Minnesota Timberwolves, as the duo overpassed in the final possession that they didn’t even get a shot off. It’s credit to the T-Wolves’ defense too.
We’ll see how they’ll respond tomorrow. Note that this is a marquee matchup in Doncic’s case as well, considering he and Jokic have been MVP candidates all season long. He’ll hope to shoot better, though, as he is just shooting 41.8% in the season series, a blemish in his triple-double numbers: 25.7 points, 10.3 rebounds, and 10.3 assists.
Irving, meanwhile, will look to continue feasting on defenses. He’s at 28.3 points and 7.0 assists per game on 53.3% shooting in four games with the Mavs. Thursday will be his first time playing opposite the Nuggets this season.
The Mavs have scored 120 or more points in three of their last four games. They are also 4-1 ATS in their last five road games.
Handicap: The Nuggets (-7) get the win but fail to cover the spread.
Over/Under: The over 232.5 looks good.