Utah Jazz at Denver Nuggets Preview
The Utah Jazz (34-26) and Denver Nuggets (42-18) meet tonight at the Pepsi Center. The Utah Jazz are looking for another win after winning eight of their last 12. Last night, they rallied from a 17-point first-half deficit, to come back and beat the Clippers 111-105. Utah has shown they are really starting to click, as they’ve outscored teams by an average of 11.4 points in their last five contest and have shot nearly 50 percent from the field during that time. They will be in for a tough one tonight at the Pepsi Center, as they take on a Nuggets team with the best home record in the NBA.
On Tuesday night, Denver beat OKC 121-112 in what was a matchup between two of the top three teams in the West. Nikola Jokic had another excellent game scoring 36 points, including five free throws in the final moments. Jokic also added 10 assists and nine rebounds to finish just shy of his 13th triple-double this season. The Nuggets have won their fifth straight and ninth in a row at home and are a half game behind the Warriors in the Western Conference standings, while Utah currently sits as the 6th seed.
Time: 10:30 pm ET
Arena: Pepsi Center, Denver, CO
Channel: ALT, ATRM, TNT
Utah Jazz Starting Lineup
Last night, Utah picked up its fourth straight win at home against the Clippers by overcoming early shooting struggles and playing tough defense at the right time. Donovan Mitchell leads the Jazz with 32 points while Rudy Gobert added 20 points and 13 rebounds. Derrick Favors and Ricky Rubio also chipped in 13 points apiece with Favors also collecting 11 rebounds. Utah shot 41 percent from the field and finished with a season-high 12 blocked shots, which really helped the Jazz turn the tide defensively starting late in the first quarter.
Utah is averaging 110.1 points on the season and shooting 46.2%. Defensively they’ve allowed an average of 106.7 points on 45.6% shooting. Mitchell is their leading scorer averaging 22.8 points and four assists, while Gobert is averaging 15.4 points and 12.9 rebounds. Rubio is Utah’s third double-digit scorer and Jae Crowder has averaged 4.8 rebounds. As a team, they’re averaging 34.8% from beyond the arc and 73.8% from the free throw line, while allowing 36% from deep and averaging 45.7 rebounds per game. The Jazz have also lost their last three road games, which certainly doesn’t bode well for them tonight as they take on the team with the best home record.
Denver Nuggets Starting Lineup
The Nuggets are looking for another victory to build on their current five-game winning streak. Besides Jokic being dominant Tuesday night, Will Barton had 23 points, Jamal Murray had 20, and Paul Millsap had 12 points and delivered a huge block in the fourth quarter to help prevent an Oklahoma City’s comeback. He also grabbed a key offensive rebound and put back a layup later in the game to help secure a victory.
This season Denver is averaging 112.4 points on 47.1% shootig, while allowing 106.9 points on 45.7% shooting. Denver’s leading scorer is Nikola Jokic who’s averaging 20.7 points and 10.7 rebounds, with Jamal Murray also averaging 18.1 points and five assists. Gary Harris is the Nuggets third double-digit scorer and Paul Millsap is averaging 7.1 rebounds per game. The Nuggets have shot 35.7% from beyond the arc and 75.3 percent from the free throw line, while allowing 34.1% from deep and averaging 46.8 rebounds per game. Denver has also won their last nine home games to go along with their current best home record in the NBA. Trey Lyles will miss his fourth consecutive game with a left hamstring strain.
Denver Nuggets vs. Utah Jazz Betting Odds
Denver is a -7 favorite tonight and are 34-10 on the year when favored. They also have the best home record in the NBA of 27-4. Utah hasn’t been an underdog much this year but are 6-10 when they are. The Jazz also have a losing road record of 14-16. The money line has grown from DEN -290 after opening up at -280, with the over under at 224.5 points.
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