The Denver Nuggets and New Orleans Pelicans meet for the third and final time in the regular season tied at one game apiece. We could be in for a solid matchup finale.

Catch the game tomorrow at  11:00 AM, Manila time.

AWAY: New Orleans Pelicans (23-15, 11-7 AWAY)

Projected starting five:

  • CJ McCollum
  • Brandon Ingram
  • Herb Jones
  • Zion Williamson
  • Jonas Valanciunas

The Pelicans enter the game while on an encouraging stretch. They are 6-1 over their last seven games, averaging 119.0 points and only allowing 103.0 in return during that span. Percentages within that are also nice: 45.7% from deep and 51.7% overall.

There’s plenty of talent in the Pels locker room, and all can deliver the goods any day of the week. Brandon Ingram (22.0 PPG), Zion Williamson (21.7 PPG), and CJ McCollum (19.7 ppg) are all basically in the 20-plus points per game club, with big man Jonas Valanciunas (14.2 PPG, 9.7 RPG) joining in with nice production. Guys like Herb Jones, Trey Murphy III, and rookie Jordan Hawkins also chip in when called upon.

However, they also have to be on their A-game on defense against the loaded arsenal of the defending champs. The Pels are currently fifth in points allowed and sixth in defensive rating, and will have a good opportunity to prove why.


HOME: Denver Nuggets (26-13, 15-4 HOME)

Projected starting five:

  • Jamal Murray
  • Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
  • Michael Porter Jr.
  • Aaron Gordon
  • Nikola Jokic

The Nuggets have looked shaky over the past two weeks. They are 3-3 in their last six outings with a negative net rating, scoring 116.0 points and giving up 116.5. On Thursday, they couldn’t keep up with the Utah Jazz, and lost,124-113, with the three Jazz players scoring 20 or more points and the team collectively shooting 55.4% from the field.

The good thing, however, is they’ve looked as such previously and handled it well. Last month, they had a three-game skid and answered with a 9-1 stretch on a +12.7 net rating. Maybe tomorrow is the start of another hot run?

Whichever it may be, it’s always easy to expect the Nikola Jokic (25.5 PPG, 11.8 RPG, 9.2 APG) and Jamal Murray (20.5 PPG, 6.2 APG) tandem to lead the way, especially since they have a nice army behind them in Aaron Gordon, Michael Porter Jr., Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, and Reggie Jackson. The young guys, namely Peyton Watson and rookie Julian Strawther, are showing flashes too.


Handicap: The Nuggets (-8) cover.Over/Under: The total goes over 229.