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NBA Playoffs: Phoenix Suns vs. Denver Nuggets Betting Preview

The NBA playoffs continue Monday with a Western Conference showdown between the Phoenix Suns (0-1) and the Denver Nuggets (1-0). The Nuggets will host this one at Ball Arena, with tipoff scheduled for 10:00 pm ET.

The Nuggets are the favorite in this one playing at home. They are -196 to win, while the Suns’ moneyline sits at +164. The spread features Phoenix as 4.5-point underdogs (-112), and the over/under for total points is 228 (-110).

Suns Need Better Effort On The Road

If Game 1 was any indication, it could be a long series for the Phoenix Suns. After taking a one-point lead into the second quarter Friday, they were outscored 37-19 in the second frame. The Suns could never recover from this and ultimately lost 125-107.

In the loss, Kevin Durant had a sensational game. He finished with a team-high 19 points and 14 rebounds.

Devin Booker also played well going for 27 points, eight assists, and four rebounds. Still, it wasn’t enough to take down the Nuggets on the road.

Other contributors for the Suns in Game 1 included DeAndre Ayton (14 points, seven rebounds) and Chris Paul (11 points, five assists).

This season, Phoenix has ranked just 17th in scoring, averaging 114.1 points per game. In their last three contests, that number has risen to 125.7, but they were obviously stifled by Denver’s defense.

On the other end of the court, the Suns rank seventh in scoring defense, allowing opponents an average of 111.8 points per game.

Nuggets Look To Take Commanding Lead At Home

At 53-29, the Denver Nuggets were the best team in the West this season, and their play at home was a large reason for it. During the regular season, they were 34-7 when playing at Ball Arena. They will look to use this home court advantage to take a commanding lead in the series.

In Friday’s opener, the Nuggets’ offense was clicking with six players scoring double digits. They were led by Jamal Murray, who had 34 points, nine assists, and five rebounds. Nikola Jokic might have had the most impressive game, going for 24 points, 19 rebounds, and five assists.

Aaron Gordon (23 points, six rebounds), Bruce Brown Jr (14 points), Michael Porter Jr (11 points), and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (10 points) also had nice games.

Denver’s defense this season ranks ninth in the NBA, allowing opponents an average of 112.1 points per game (109 at home). On offense, they rank 11th in scoring, averaging 115.7 points per game (119 at home).

Take Phoenix And The Points

Looking at the trends, the Suns are 4-1 in their last five games overall, but they are 1-4 against the spread in their last five games against the Nuggets.

As for Denver, they are 6-1 overall and 5-2 against the spread in their last seven games. They are undefeated in their last six games at home.

With how dominant the Nuggets are at home, it is hard to bet on Phoenix to win this one straight up. Still, it would be shocking if this one weren’t closer than Friday’s opener.

Expect Devin Booker and Kevin Durant to play like superstars and to at least keep this one close. For that reason, take Phoenix and the +4.5 points (-112) on the spread.

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