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NBA: Atlanta Hawks @ Cleveland Cavaliers odds, picks and prediction
The Denver Nuggets (15-11) stop by TD Garden Tuesday for a 7 p.m. ET tip-off against the Boston Celtics (13-13). Below, we analyze the Nuggets-Celtics NBA odds and lines, with picks and predictions.
Denver recovered from a three-game losing skid, which started with a Feb. 4 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers, by winning three straight with its latest win coming against the Lakers Sunday.
The Celtics’ struggles are one of the bigger stories in the Association as they’ve lost four of their past five games and five of eight this month. Boston has the second-lowest field goal percentage in February and is dead-last in points in the paint per game this month.
The Nuggets had a three-game winning streak over the Celtics snapped in their final regular-season game last year and these sides are split 2-2 ATS in their last four meetings.
Nuggets at Celtics: Odds, spread and lines
Odds via BetMGM; access USA TODAY Sports’ betting odds for a full list. Lines last updated at 11:55 a.m. ET.
Money line: Nuggets +110 (bet $100 to win $110) | Celtics -135 (bet $135 to win $100) Against the spread/ATS: Nuggets +2.5 (-115) | Celtics -2.5 (-105) Over/Under: 220.5 (O: -110 | U: -110)
Nuggets at Celtics: Key injuries
PF Paul Millsap (knee) out SF Will Barton (personal) out SG Gary Harris (thigh) out SG Monte Morris (shoulder) questionable SG P.J. Dozier (hamstring) out
C Daniel Theis (finger) questionable SG Marcus Smart (calf) out
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Nuggets at Celtics: Odds, lines, predictions and picks
Nuggets 115, Celtics 108
Money line (ML)
As much as I’d like to buy some Boston stock right now, it’s tough because the Celtics’ superstars haven’t played all that well vs. Denver.
Celtics SF Jayson Tatum is even in net rating and SG Jaylen Brown has a minus-2 net rating in their careers vs. Denver and neither are averaging more than 17.0 points per game.
Compare that to Nuggets C Nikola Jokic who has a plus-19 net rating in nine career games against Boston and he put up a 30-point, 10-rebound game in their last meeting.
Also, Denver has played really well vs. teams with similar profiles as Boston’s. The Nuggets are 8-4 with a plus-3-point spread differential and plus-5-point net rating vs. teams in the top-10 of defensive efficiency, according to CleaningTheGlass.com.
I lean NUGGETS (+110) because Denver plus the points is the preferable option.
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Against the spread (ATS)
The main reason for the pricing of this game is Denver being without three starters but I’d argue the biggest absence for either team is Smart not being available for Boston.
The Celtics score the fourth-fewest bench points in the NBA and the Nuggets score the ninth-most. Denver SF Michael Porter Jr. getting a bigger role due to injuries could open up the Nuggets offense.
BET NUGGETS +2.5 (-115) heavier or instead of Denver’s money line.
I lean OVER 220.5 (-110) for a tiny wager because the sharps are on the Over whereas the public is on the Under and I’d prefer to follow the money.
Boston’s offense has been terrible this month and Denver’s injuries could affect its offensive production.
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