NBA Picks: Road Dog Nuggets To Bite Clippers Tonight

Swinging Johnson

Sunday, March 27, 2016 11:53 AM GMT

Sunday, Mar. 27, 2016 11:53 AM GMT

The Nuggets won three of their last four games while the Clippers snapped a three-game slide on Thursday with a win over Portland. Let's review the NBA odds and cash a ticket this afternoon.

Denver Nuggets (31-42 SU, 39-31-3 ATS)
If the Nuggets won eight of their last nine remaining games and the Mavericks, Jazz and/or Rockets all tanked down the homestretch then maybe, just maybe the Nuggets could sneak into the playoffs through the backdoor. The moon and stars would have to align perfectly for Denver to make a postseason appearance as they are currently 5½ games out of the eighth and final spot with the Mavericks in front of them and knocking on the playoff door. It is a highly unlikely scenario but Denver has won three of their last four and therefore a pulse remains.

In their last outing the Nuggets took the floor against the Lakers, installed as four-point road favorites by the NBA odds makers and not only crushed Kobe's crew but covered the number for all those who backed Denver in their NBA picks. When the final buzzer sounded the Nuggets dribbled away with a 116-104 win and kept their dimming playoff hopes alive. The Nuggets got a herculean effort from their bench that scored 71 points, led by D.J. Augustin's 20 points which included five three-pointers.

 

Los Angeles Clippers (44-27 SU, 32-36-3 ATS)
The Clippers are the fourth seed in the West and it's a pretty good bet that is exactly where they will remain. As they enter this afternoon's action against the Denver Nuggets the Clippers are 4½ games in front of the Memphis Grizzlies and trail the Oklahoma City Thunder by six games for the third playoff spot in the conference. But the Clippers still have 11 games on the docket which means there is still time to jockey up or down depending upon their performance and those of their rivals.

Despite the Clippers 96-94 victory over Portland on Thursday night, they have not played well over the last three weeks. LA has gone 4-7 straight up but a money burning 2-9 ATS during that stretch. Case in point was their three game slide that preceded their Thursday night win against the Trail Blazers. The Clips lost on the road to an undermanned Memphis squad and in New Orleans to the Pelicans as nine and 10 point road favorites respectively. When you are a double digit favorite the question is not if you'll win but by how much. The Clippers could not even muster a victory in either of those contests never mind an ATS cover. Even their win in Portland came down to the wire as the Clippers were six-point home chalk but only escaped courtesy of a slick pass by Chris Paul to J.J. Reddick who buried a 21-foot shot with only a second remaining to win the game.

 

Betting Analysis
The home cookin' has not made a whit of difference in this season's series as the Nuggets dropped a 111-94 decision in Mile High back in November and the Clippers lost 87-81 as double digit home favorites in February. The bottom line in this matchup is that the Clippers are content in the knowledge that fourth place is theirs and preparing for the postseason is more important than focusing on the here and now. Conversely, the Nuggets are playing good basketball and have proven once already they can defeat the Clippers on their home court. Couple that with the anticipated return of Kenneth Faried (back) after a five game absence and we have the makings of a live road dog here.

Denver is 4-0 ATS in their last four versus the Western Conference.
Denver is 5-1 ATS in their last six games following a straight up win.
Denver is 7-2 ATS in their last nine games versus a team with a winning percentage above .600.
LA is 1-4 ATS in their last five versus Northwest Division opponents.
LA is 2-7 ATS in their last nine Sunday games.

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Free NBA Pick: Denver +8 -103
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle

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