The Denver Nuggets came back from a double-digit second half deficit in back-to-back games to avoid elimination against the Los Angeles Clippers. On Tuesday evening, Mike Malone's team will try to win a third consecutive game in the 2020 NBA Playoffs against the Clippers in a winner-take-all Game 7, with the winner set to advance to face the Los Angeles Lakers in the Western Conference Finals. The Clippers report no injuries for Game 7, but the Nuggets will be without both Will Barton (knee) and Vlatko Cancar (foot) on Tuesday.
Tip-off is 9 p.m. ET from AdventHealth Arena in the Orlando bubble. The latest Clippers vs. Nuggets odds from William Hill list Los Angeles as the 7.5-point favorite, up a point from the opening line. The over-under for total points is set at 208.5. Before making any Nuggets vs. Clippers picks, be sure to see the NBA predictions from SportsLine's proven computer model.
The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every NBA game 10,000 times, and it's already returned over $5,000 in profit on its top-rated NBA picks this season. It entered the week on a blistering 61-33 run on top-rated NBA spread picks, returning almost $2,500 on those picks alone. It's also a sizzling 11-3 on top-rated picks since the NBA's restart in July. Anybody who has followed it has seen huge returns.
- Clippers vs. Nuggets spread: Clippers -7.5
- Clippers vs. Nuggets over-under: 208.5 points
- Clippers vs. Nuggets money line: Clippers -330, Nuggets +270
- LAC: The Clippers are 5-5 against the spread in the last 10 games
- DEN: The Nuggets are 7-3 against the spread in the last 10 games
Why the Clippers can cover
Simply put, the Clippers are the more talented team, as evidenced by the point spread leaning heavily in their favor despite a neutral court. Reigning NBA Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard is averaging 29.4 points, 9.6 rebounds and 5.5 assists per game in the playoffs, and he is supplemented by another star in Paul George, averaging 21.1 points and 6.3 rebounds per contest in the postseason. The Clippers are also the best offensive team alive in the postseason, scoring 115.7 points per 100 possessions in the playoffs.
L.A. has been elite at avoiding turnovers, giving the ball away on only 13.2 percent of possessions, and the Clippers were also the best team in the NBA in terms of free-throw rate during the regular season. Defensively, the Clippers have been slightly shakier, but they are still holding the Nuggets to under 1.08 points per possession, a figure that is significantly lower than Denver's regular season baseline.
Why the Nuggets can cover
The Nuggets are on a roll after back-to-back wins, and Denver has strengths to rely on in this pivotal matchup. Denver has the best assist-to-turnover ratio (1.65-to-1) of any team in the conference semifinals, and the Nuggets are turning the ball over on only 14.2 percent of possessions against the Clippers. Defensively, the Nuggets are not elite, but they are holding the Clippers to only 109.5 points per 100 possessions in the series, down from more than 114 points per 100 possessions scored by L.A. during the regular season.
The Nuggets can also fall back on top-tier production from Nikola Jokic, who is averaging 26.1 points, 9.9 rebounds and 5.5 assists per game in the series. Finally, Denver has L.A.'s number whenever Sixth Man of the Year Montrezl Harrell is on the court in the series, with the Nuggets outscoring the Clippers by 11.3 points per 100 possessions in those instances.
How to make Clippers vs. Nuggets picks
SportsLine's model is leaning over on the total, with Leonard and Jamal Murray both projected to outperform their season-long scoring averages. It also says one side of the spread hits almost 60 percent of the time. You can only get the pick at SportsLine.
So who wins Clippers vs. Nuggets? And which side of the spread hits almost 60 percent of the time? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Nuggets vs. Clippers spread to jump on, all from the advanced model that is up over $5,000 on its top-rated NBA picks this season, and find out.