NBA Picks Bulls vs. Nuggets Betting Preview

Swinging Johnson

Thursday, November 21, 2013 1:05 PM GMT

Thursday, Nov. 21, 2013 1:05 PM GMT

The Bulls are looking for their sixth consecutive win while the Nuggets are mired in a two game mini-slump but where is the value in NBA odds in tonight's game?

Chicago Bulls (6-3 SU, 4-5, ATS)

The Bulls knocked off the Bobcats 86-81 on Monday night for their fifth straight win but it wasn't good enough for those who were riding the recent Chi-Town money train as Chicago failed to cover as 12 ½ point favorites in NBA odds. It was the first blown cover during their current win streak but the team will look to keep the good times rolling when they open up a six-game road trip in the Mile High City. 

The Bulls won ugly against Charlotte but a win is a win to the men in uniform but to those that back their opinions with greenbacks, all wins are not created equal. Nevertheless, it was the timely shooting of Luol Deng who knocked down a 3-pointer with only 27 seconds left on the clock and the big nasty himself, Carlos Boozer, who owned the boards with 17 rebounds. The Bulls also made it count at the free-throw line by going 26 of 31 which allowed Chicago to escape their house with a victory before embarking on the arduous road swing that looms.

Denver Nuggets (4-6 SU, 5-5 ATS)

Kevin Durant and the Thunder kicked Denver right in the nuggets when it mattered on Monday evening. After leading Oklahoma City by 11 at the end of the first quarter and beginning the fourth with a nine point lead, the Thunder finally struck and ultimately rolled to a 115-113 home victory. The news wasn't all bad for the Denver faithful as they easily covered the number as 9 ½ point puppies in NBA odds

Though Denver controlled most of the game they did fade down the stretch despite Ty Lawson's 29 point contribution and a woeful performance at the charity stripe contributed mightily to their failure. The Nuggets made only 25 of 43 compared to the 26 of 32 by Oklahoma City. In addition, Denver surrendered 19 offensive rebounds to the Thunder which if converted would have gone a long way towards mitigating the combined 68 points of the dynamic duo of Durant and Westbrook. 

Free Pick:

The Nuggets won both games against the Bulls last season with a 119-118 nail biter in Chicago preceded by a 128-96 blowout in Denver. But let's not forget that those Bulls didn't have former MVP Derrick Rose suited up. However, Rose is back after taking last season off to rehabilitate his torn ACL suffered in the first-round of the 2011-2012 playoffs.

But will Derrick Rose markedly affect this game? His numbers are expectedly down after only eight games back from a devastating injury but this Chicago team is building up a head of steam as they take to the highway over the next two weeks. Defensively the Bulls are about the best in the business, ranking 2nd in the NBA by allowing an average of only 89 points per game. They control the boards effectively (ranked 4th with almost 46 boards per contest) but scoring points has not been the hallmark to their success. Averaging only 94 points per game they will need to clamp down on a frenetic attack by the Nuggets.

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Conversely, the Nuggets are big on scoring but not too keen on defending. Denver scores an average of over 104 PPG (7th) while surrendering over 105 (28th). Not exactly a winning recipe for success when you average a point less than you allow. But here's the difference maker in this game. Both teams are big bounders with Chicago ranking 4th and Denver ranked one notch above in 3rd. The battle of the boards will determine who wins this game and I like the fight that Denver showed against the uber talented OKC Thunder. For our NBA picks, the Nuggets will score often and Chicago will be unable to keep pace.

Play Denver +1 ½ at Bet365.com.

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