Trail Blazers vs Nuggets Pick: The Portland Trailblazers will be taking a trip to Colorado to take on the Denver Nuggets. The Nuggets are happy to return to their home after going 1-3 on the road. The Nuggets need to win their next two home games before the All-Star break.

The Nuggets were recently handed a loss by the Atlanta Hawks dropping their record to 16-14. Atlanta had an offensive rating of 124.2 and dropped the Nuggets defense down to 21st in the league.

Nikola Jokic struggled to find his shot last game going only 5-15 and 2-5 from the arc and the rest of the team could rally together to come out on top.

A look at the Nuggets and Trail Blazers

The Nuggets will need to do several things in order to beat the Trail Blazers. They are going to need to defend the three-point line and attack the rim on offense. The Trail Blazers rank first in the league in 3 point attempts per game (42.4) and fifth in percentage (38.7%).

Denver’s opponents have attempted 38.2 percent of the shot from behind the 3-point line which ranks 24th in the league. If Portland can sink their shots then the Nuggets defense will be in trouble.

The Nuggets rank above the league average in the frequency of shot attempts coming from deep and the mid-range. This being said the nuggets need to start attacking the rim more and drawing fouls.

Denver this season has taken 31.1 percent of their shots from within four feet of the rim. On those shots, the Nuggets are hitting 66.7 percent of them ranking them sixth in the league. This just shows how good they could be when attacking the rim.

The Trail Blazers have struggled to defend the rim, allowing teams to get in the paint far too often. Opponents have taken 36 percent of their shot from inside the paint against the Trail Blazers which ranks 24th in the league.

Injuries

The Trail Blazers are missing several players and the Nuggets need to take advantage of that. Zach Collins is out with a stress fracture in his left ankle, Harry Giles is out with a left calf strain, CJ McCollum with a left midfoot fracture, and Jusuf Nurkic with a right wrist fracture.

With McCollum out Lillard has increased his workload and has continued to put up great numbers averaging 30 points and 7.9 assists.

The Nuggets are missing many players as well. Dozier is out with a hamstring injury, Gary Harris with a thigh injury, JaMychal Green with a shoulder injury, Paul Millsap with a knee injury, and Greg Whittington.

With Harris out for Tuesday’s game, Murray and Barton III will most likely take on the job of defending Lillard.
Denver projected starters for Tuesday are Jamal Murray (PF), Will Barton III (SF), Michael Porter Jr. (SF), Zeke Nnaji (PF), and Nikola Jokic (C). Portland starters are going to be Derrick Jones Jr. (F), Robert Covington (F), Gary Trent Jr. (G), Damian Lillard (G), and Enes Kanter (C).

Prediction

The Denver Nuggets are favored this week with the spread at -7.5 and -330 on the money line. The over/under has been set at 231.

The Nuggets this year have covered the spread as the home favorite only 44.4% so as a betting man I would take the Moneyline and leave the spread alone in what is going to be a Nuggets Win.

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My name is Asa Agnoli. Miami has always been my home. I’m a senior University of Miami and I live and breathe all things sports. I played sports throughout my whole life. This semester I’ll be a writing intern with Knup solutions learning how to write creative content for the esports and I-gaming industries. In the Spring I graduate from the University of Miami with a degree in Sports Administration, minoring in Sports Medicine.