The Denver Nuggets suffered their first loss of the year last night, losing to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Yet, they don’t have too much time to lament because Utah Jazz awaits them in Salt Lake City, less than 24 hours since the above-mentioned failure. Nikola Jokic likes to play against one of the most dominant defenders in history, Rudy Gobert. The reigning MVP often trashes the French, and we can’t wait to see what happens tonight. Utah didn’t lose so far, and they intend to keep it like that.
Denver Nuggets (2-1, +260) surprised everyone with a home loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Don’t get us wrong, the Cavs have a talented and solid team, but simply, we believe that they aren’t better than the Nuggets, especially in Colorado.
Michael Malone’s side scored only 87 points, of which Jokic had 24. The NB MVP added 19 boards, three assists, and steals, while shooting 9-for-15 from the field. His teammates failed to show up, with Aaron Gordon and Will Barton dropping 12 points each, while shooting threes 2-for-9 combined.
Michael Porter Jr. scored 11 points, and his start of the season is beneath the expected. After receiving a fat deal this summer, the young forward has to be better, otherwise, the entire team will struggle. He needs to step up and replace Jamal Murray, especially in the offense. Denver allowed the Cavs to hit only seven threes but had a far better overall shooting percentage, 46.3%.
Utah Jazz (2-0, -330) is in a good mood, triumphing against the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Sacramento Kings in the first two meetings. The game against OKC was at home, 107-86, and against the Kings in Sacramento, 101-110.
We’ve seen the Jazzers slowing down Kings who weren’t able to impose their style of play with fast-paced running up and down the field, and with lots of three-pointers. Even though the Jazzers had a bit poor shooting percentage, 41.1%, they limited the rivals to 39.4%, neutralizing that aspect of their play. What was the biggest difference is that Utah scored 16 threes, twice as many as the home side.
Donovan Mitchell had 27 points, hitting six three-pointers. Mike Conley and Rudy Gobert both had 20 each, with the note that Gobert added 20 boards. Jordan Clarkson came off the bench to deliver 15 buckets, while Bojan Bogdanovic had 13.
Head to Head Games
The result in the 2020 series was 2-1 for the Jazz. The first two matches were in Denver, and each team had a win, Jazz 109-105, and the Nuggets 128-117. Meanwhile, the meeting in Utah saw the hosts winning 127-120.
The spread on the Jazz is -7, and we aren’t that sure if they can cover it, but on the other hand, their win is quite realistic, and we are sticking with it. The Nuggets are coming to Salt Lake City following a loss and playing the second of back-to-back nights, which is a huge burden for Mike Malone’s crew. Meanwhile, the Jazz are fresh and ready to use all the negative circumstances surrounding Denver, plus they play in front of their crowd. That is one more reason for backing up the hosts.
Pick: Utah Wins
Nikola Velickovic is a sports journalist who loves to write and read on all sports. Nikola contributes both news updates and functions as a sports breaking news writer at WagerBop.