The Denver Nuggets and Oklahoma City Thunder meet Friday in NBA action at the Chesapeake Energy Arena.
The Denver Nuggets look to stay hot after winning six of their last eight games. The Denver Nuggets are averaging 110.4 points on 46.5 percent shooting and allowing 106.7 points on 45.7 percent shooting. Nikola Jokic is averaging 20.6 points and 10.2 rebounds while Jamal Murray is averaging 18.9 points and 4.8 assists. Will Barton is the third double-digit scorer and Paul Millsap is grabbing 5.9 rebounds. The Denver Nuggets are shooting 35.7 percent from beyond the arc and 77.7 percent from the free throw line. The Denver Nuggets are allowing 34.2 percent shooting from deep and are grabbing 44.9 rebounds per game. The Denver Nuggets have won eight of their last 11 road games.
The Oklahoma City Thunder look for a win after winning 10 of their last 13 games. The Oklahoma City Thunder are averaging 110.6 points on 47.1 percent shooting and allowing 108 points on 45.6 percent shooting. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is averaging 19.5 points and 6.1 rebounds while Danilo Gallinari is averaging 19.3 points and 2.3 assists. Dennis Schroder is the third double-digit scorer and Chris Paul is dishing 6.7 assists. The Oklahoma City Thunder are shooting 35.4 percent from beyond the arc and 80.4 percent from the free throw line. The Oklahoma City Thunder are allowing 34.5 percent shooting from deep and are grabbing 43.1 rebounds per game. The Oklahoma City Thunder have split their last six home games.
Denver Nuggets at Oklahoma City Head to Head
The Thunder and the Denver Nuggets have played 182 games in the regular season with 98 victories for the Thunder and 84 for the Nuggets. The Nuggets have won nine of the past 10 meetings following a stretch in which Oklahoma City racked up nine consecutive triumphs.
Denver Nuggets at Oklahoma City Stats
Denver resides in second place in the Western Conference and would like to make a run at the first-place Los Angeles Lakers, who have a four-game cushion as play resumes after the All-Star break. “Emotionally, we have to find a way to get back and not ease into the post-All-Star break run,” Nuggets coach Michael Malone told reporters. “We have a very difficult schedule moving forward and we’re not satisfied with where we’re at. Let’s continue to make a push.” Oklahoma City shares sixth place in the West with the Dallas Mavericks and won 10 of its past 13 games. Forward Danilo Gallinari was nearly dealt at the trading deadline but made the lack of action look good by scoring 29 points on 12-of-18 shooting in a 123-118 road victory over the New Orleans Pelicans on Feb. 13 in the squad’s final game before the break.
The trio of guards Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (team-high 19.5 scoring average), Dennis Schroder (19.3) and Chris Paul (17.4 points, team-leading 6.7 assists) continue to fuel the strong season. Gilgeous-Alexander is displaying signs of being a go-to force in his second season, Schroder is supplying big-time punch off the bench and All-Star Paul is delivering big-time leadership. The standard belief was that the Thunder would deal Paul after acquiring him in the Russell Westbrook deal but instead he has meshed well with younger teammates and impressed coach Billy Donovan with his teamwork and guidance skills.
Denver Nuggets at Oklahoma City News
Missing players Nuggets: Mason Plumlee (Foot) is out injured. Will Barton (Knee) and Michael Porter Jr. (Ankle) are questionable.
Missing players Thunder: Darius Bazley (Thumb) is out.
Denver Nuggets at Oklahoma City Odds
Spread: -1 Thunder
Denver Nuggets at Oklahoma City Predictions
The Denver Nuggets are playing their best ball of the season, Jokic is in shape and they’ve won each of the last seven meetings against OKC. However, the Oklahoma City Thunder have been a consistent home team all season where they win by an average of 3.4 points, shoot 48.5 percent from the field and 36 percent from three. The Oklahoma City Thunder are also 25-8 ATS this season in the underdog role. I’ll take OKC at home in this toss up contest.