The Denver Nuggets and the Los Angeles Clippers will square off on Wednesday in what could be a playoff preview. Nikola Jokic leads the way for Denver, while Kawhi Leonard and Paul George operate as the top options for the Clippers. On the injury front, Patrick Beverley (calf), Landry Shamet (foot) and Montrezl Harrell (self-isolation) are out for the Clippers. For Denver, Will Barton (knee), Gary Harris (hip) and Vlatko Cancar (foot) are out, with Jerami Grant (knee) listed as questionable.
Tip-off is at 9 p.m. ET in Orlando. William Hill lists the Clippers as 4.5-point favorites, holding steady from the opener, while the over-under, or total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, is 229 in the latest Clippers vs. Nuggets odds. Before you make any Nuggets vs. Clippers picks or NBA predictions, see what SportsLine's advanced computer model has to say.
The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every NBA game 10,000 times, and it's already returned well over $4,700 in profit on its top-rated NBA picks this season. It entered the week on a blistering 58-32 run on top-rated NBA spread picks, returning almost $2,300 on those picks alone. Amazingly, it hasn't missed a single top-rated pick (5-0) since the NBA's restart in July. Anybody who has followed it has seen huge returns.
- Clippers vs. Nuggets spread: Clippers -4.5
- Clippers vs. Nuggets over-under: 229 points
- Clippers vs. Nuggets money line: Clippers -190, Nuggets +170
- LAC: The Clippers are 7-3 against the spread in the last 10 games
- DEN: The Nuggets are 5-3 against the spread in the last eight games
Why the Clippers can cover
The Clippers are one of the NBA's best teams and that manifests with dominance on both sides of the floor. L.A. boasts a top-three offense in the league, headlined by Leonard and George. The Clippers are above-average virtually across the board, including in shooting efficiency, offensive rebounding and turnover avoidance. From there, the Clippers rank No. 2 in the NBA in free throw rate, which helps to maximize efficiency.
Denver is a middling team defensively and, in the small sample size of the bubble, the Nuggets have the worst defensive rating in the NBA. On the other end, the Clippers rank in the top-five in overall defensive efficiency. L.A. is also elite at contesting shots, which leads to a top-three mark in the league in shooting efficiency allowed.
Why the Nuggets can cover
While the Clippers do present a strong defense, L.A. could be vulnerable without Beverley and, in short, the Nuggets are a tremendous offensive team. For the full season, Denver ranks as an above-average offense on a per-possession basis, with even more encouraging metrics in Orlando. The Nuggets are an elite offensive rebounding team, putting pressure on opponents with their size, and Denver ranks in the top 10 of the NBA in effective field goal percentage and turnover rate.
On an individual basis, Jokic is one of the game's best, averaging 20.2 points, 9.9 rebounds and 7.0 assists per game. He is flanked by a strong supporting cast but, in particular, Michael Porter Jr. is shining in the bubble, averaging 26.4 points and 10.8 rebounds in the last five games.
How to make Clippers vs. Nuggets picks
SportsLine's model is leaning over the total, with Leonard and Porter Jr. projected to exceed their scoring averages. The model also says one side of the spread hits in well over 50 percent of simulations. You can only get the pick at SportsLine.
So who wins Clippers vs. Nuggets? And which side of the spread hits in well over 50 percent of simulations? 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 $4,700 on its top-rated NBA picks this season, and find out.