The Denver Nuggets have dominated the Phoenix Suns this season, thus far. But pulling off another victory at the expense of Phoenix is going to be easier said than done, with the Suns now featuring Kevin Durant. Will the Nuggets go 3-0 against Phoenix? Or, will the Suns finally hit back?
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Away: Denver Nuggets (51-24/19-18 Away)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Jamal Murray (DTD)
- SG: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
- SF: Michael Porter Jr.
- PF: Aaron Gordon
- C: Nikola Jokic (DTD)
Without Nikola Jokic, the Nuggets got skewered by the New Orleans Pelicans at home Friday, 107-88. However, there is a chance that Jokic will be back to action this Saturday, with the Nuggets probably just opting to rest him for the first game of a back-to-back set. Jokic has been a nightmare for the Suns this season.
Behind Jokic, the Nuggets have gone 2-0 straight up this season versus the Suns, and in those games, the Serbian has totaled 62 points on 65 FG%, 33 rebounds, and 24 assists, while also committing just six turnovers despite the high usage. Another thing to note about the Nuggets is the availability of Jamal Murray, with Nuggets head coach Mike Malone saying that it’s possible that Denver will give the guard a rest this Saturday.
The Nuggets are 18-8 against the spread in their last 26 games against teams with a winning record.
Home: Phoenix Suns (41-35/25-12 Home)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Chris Paul
- SG: Devin Booker
- SF: Josh Okogie
- PF: Kevin Durant
- C: Deandre Ayton
Whining about the officiating (and getting fined for it) seemed to do the trick for Monty Williams and the Suns, who went to the free-throw line 27 times to just 12 by the Minnesota Timberwolves in a 107-100 home win Thursday. But whether they get that kind of volume again on the foul line or not, the Suns expect to put up a better fight this time around than in the last two meetings with the Nuggets.
For one, this will be the first game that the Suns will play Denver with Kevin Durant. Plus, the last time they shared the floor with the Nuggets, the Suns did not have Devin Booker, Chris Paul, and Deandre Ayton in a 126-97 road loss in January. Durant must be aching to atone for his poor shooting performance in his home debut for the Suns in which he went 5/18 for 16 points versus the Timberwolves. The Suns, who have won all their last three games, are 7-2 ATS in their last nine at home against Denver.
Spread: The Nuggets (+8.5) cover the spread.
Over/Under: The total (226.5) hits the Under.