The Golden State Warriors (55-29 SU, 43-37-4 ATS) look to take a stranglehold on the series when they visit the Denver Nuggets (48-36, 37-47) at Ball Arena on Thursday. The Warriors are up 2-0 in the first-round matchup after taking the first two games at home. Can the visitors set themselves up for a sweep? Find out in our Warriors vs Nuggets prediction.
Warriors vs Nuggets Odds & Analysis
The Warriors opened as a slim 2-point favorite on the road with the total set at 224.5 points. The OVER is 4-1 in Golden State’s last five games and 6-2 in Denver’s last eight contests. The teams have been evenly matched this season with the Nuggets taking the first three meetings and the Warriors winning the last three, making it hard to see a clear favorite in any Warriors vs Nuggets prediction.
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Curry Comes Off The Bench To Lead Warriors
Steph Curry dominated in Game 2 despite coming off the bench, scoring 34 points in just 23 minutes to lead his Warriors to a resounding 126-106 victory. Jordan Poole, who started in Curry’s place, scored 29 points – falling just short of becoming the first Golden State player to score 30 points in each of his first two playoff games.
Although Draymond Green had a quiet game offensively with six points and six assists, he came up big on the defensive end. Green helped Golden State limit reigning MVP Nikola Jokic to 9-of-20 shooting for 26 points, with the Nuggets center eventually getting ejected from the game with seven minutes remaining after a second technical foul.
Andre Iguodala (neck) is probable for Thursday’s matchup.
Nuggets Show Frustration In Game 2 Loss
Emotions boiled over for Jokic and the Nuggets on Tuesday as they dropped their second straight game in the series, with neither game looking particularly close. Not only was Jokic ejected in the fourth quarter, but DeMarcus Cousins also got into a heated exchange with teammate Will Barton during the third – a clear sign of frustration for Denver.
While Jokic has scored at a decent clip, averaging 25.5 points through the two games, he hasn’t been at his best, shooting 0-for-8 from three-point range. The same could be said for the Nuggets as a whole, with the team committing 16 turnovers in Game 2 compared to just nine for the Warriors.
Austin Rivers (back) is probable for the next game.
Warriors vs Nuggets Pick & Insights
Warriors: Keys To Cover
Golden State has demonstrated its elite depth through two games with Curry coming off the bench. Poole has been a revelation, averaging 29.5 points, while Klay Thompson is looking like his old self, averaging 20 points in the series and 30.8 points over his last 10 games. If the Warriors can keep spreading out the scoring, the Nuggets likely won’t have an answer.
Nuggets: Keys To Cover
The Nuggets need to get both their emotions and the ball under control as they did themselves no favors in Game 2. A two-game hole is not the place you want to be but the series shifts to Denver and the Nuggets have a chance to get back into it. Jokic needs to lead the way for his team, both emotionally and on the scoresheet.
Odds Shark’s Computer Warriors vs Nuggets Prediction: Nuggets +2
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