Take Nuggets +7 Our NBA Pick As Blazers Won't Cover Large Spread

Joe Catalano

Wednesday, December 30, 2015 3:59 PM GMT

Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2015 3:59 PM GMT

The Portland Trail Blazers & Denver Nuggers can sure use a victory when they meet up tonight at the Moda Center in Portland, Oregon. See who we like in this matchup for our NBA pick.

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NBA Pick: Nuggets +7 
Best Line Offered: at Heritage


Tip-off is scheduled for tonight at 10:00 p.m. EST at the Moda Center in Portland, Oregon. At 5Dimes, the Blazers are a 7 point betting favorite and the total for the game is listed at 200.5. Portland has won 2 games in a a row and destroyed Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers a couple of games ago and this is without Damian Lillard in the lineup.


Are the Blazers Better Without Lillard?
It might appear so, but definitely not as C.J. McCollum and Allen Crabbe have both coming up big without Lillard in the lineup. Basically when the star player isn't playing, this enables other stars to get more opportunities and that's what McCollum in particular has done.

This is a much weaker Portland team without LaMarcus Aldridge in the lineup as Aldridge took the loot and went to San Antonio in pursuit of a championship ring. In return, the Blazers record has suffered, but there's still talent on this squad. I look for McCollum to keep leading the way as he's becoming a really confident basketball player.


C.J. McCollum
For the season, McCollum is averaging 20.4 points, 4.3 assists and 3.4 rebounds per game. He's coming off of ahuge 35 point performance in a win over the Sacrmamento Kings and troubled star, DeMarcus Cousins.

Where Crabbe is concerned, he came back down to earth in the Kings game with 10 points, but shot the lights out against LBJ and Cleveland as he had 25 points and 6 rebounds in a 105-76 victory over Cleveland. This was by far, the biggest beating that Lebron took in a long time with just 12 points and taking a permanent seat in the 3rd quarter. The win over Cleveland appears to have given the Trail Blazers confidence as Crabbe was 4 for 6 from 3 point range.


Mason Plumlee
One player that's been a big disappointment for the Blazers has been Mason Plumlee. I saw him play with the Nets and he was outshining Brook Lopez. So much, that the Nets were looking to trade Lopez.

Instead, the Nets made the wise move and let Plumlee go and he's been merely average at 9.4 points and 8.3 rebounds per game. This is a big man with a nice touch that has the ability to be a much better player than what he's shown this season, but we haven't and most likely, won't see it.

As for the Nuggets, they've lost 6 out of their last 7 games and now you know why, aside from being on the road, the NBA odds are so high.


Talent On the Bench
While Kenneth Faried (12.7 points, 8.8 rebounds) hasn't gotten a sufficient amount of playing time starting, the Nuggets have two real stars in the making on the bench in Will Barton (16.3 points, 6 rebounds) and a player not mentioned to often in Nikola Jokic (9.1 points, 5.5 rebounds in 18.8 minutes).

This is just my opinion, but if Jokic was moved to the starting lineup, he would be a superstar as he's instant offense and can play both ends of the court. As for Barton, he's gotten an ample amount of playing time and has made the most of it as he leads team in scoring (with the exception of an ailing Danilo Galinari).

In Barton's last 10 games, he's getting starter minutes and is cashing in, averaging 20.4 points and 7.2 rebounds per game. Look for Barton to lead the way against the Trail Blazers. This is a team with a ton of young talent, but needs to be tinkered with and until that time, they will continue to lose ball games.

While the Nuggets have been losing, the games have been close and look for this game to be competitive. Take Nuggets as your NBA pick.

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