Denver Nuggets vs. New York Knicks: Predictions, Starting Lineups (1/25/24)

The Denver Nuggets (31-14) meet the New York Knicks (27-17) this Thursday (1/25/24). Get Nuggets vs. Knicks moneyline and spread odds, as well as predictions, starting lineups, injuries, and key matchups below.

Denver Nuggets vs. New York Knicks Prediction

Taking Denver’s first quarter moneyline instead of the normal moneyline is the best bet for two reasons. First, it nearly removes New York’s deep bench from the equation. Second, the Nuggets dominate the first quarter due to their hyper-elite starting lineup. They outscore opponents by 14.6 points per 100 possessions in the first quarter, which ranks second behind only Boston (via NBA.com).

Isaiah Hartenstein missed New York’s last game and enters with a questionable tag tonight. If he cannot play, then Jericho Sims will face off against Nikola Jokic. Yikes! This scenario would be cataclysmic for the Knicks. Assuming Hartenstein plays, the Nuggets still sit in a desirable position here.

Aaron Gordon is one of the few forwards that can match Julius Randle’s physicality and aggression. Jokic’s 280-pound frame will also be a deterrent too, and Michael Porter Jr. isn’t exactly small himself. Their massive frontcourt will be crucial against the Knicks.

Meanwhile, the Nuggets allow the third fewest wide open three-point attempts and the fourth fewest corner attempts. New York’s drive-and-kick game won’t be as effective against this Nuggets defense, especially since Denver possesses quality off-ball chasers. Finally, although no defender neutralizes Jalen Brunson, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope can do a good job of staying in front and walling off drives.

On the other end, OG Anunoby’s elite on-ball defense is not as effective because Porter Jr. operates as an off-ball shooter. If New York assigns Anunoby to Jamal Murray (a likely situation), then Porter Jr. could counter by attacking Donte DiVincenzo, who is six inches shorter. The Knicks also give up the seventh most corner attempts per game, which is a red flag against Denver’s shooters and Jokic’s passing.

Overall, the Nuggets boast arguably the best starting lineup in the NBA. Look for them to take the first quarter, especially if Hartenstein sits.

Denver Nuggets vs. New York Knicks Prediction: Nuggets 1st Quarter Moneyline

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Denver Nuggets vs. New York Knicks Best Odds

The reigning champs enter this game as slight 2.5 point favorites, which could be due to their atrocious 8-15-1 record against the spread on the road. In contrast, New York has a profitable 11-7-1 record against the spread at home.

The Knicks need to win this matchup at least 46 percent of the time for their +115 moneyline to hold a positive expected value, thus making it profitable in the long run.

Denver Nuggets Starting Lineup

PG: Jamal Murray
SG: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
SF: Michael Porter Jr
PF: Aaron Gordon
C: Nikola Jokic

New York Knicks Starting Lineup

PG: Jalen Brunson
SG: Donte DiVincenzo
SF: OG Anunoby
PF: Julius Randle
C: Isaiah Hartenstein

Denver Nuggets vs. New York Knicks Injuries

Mitchell Robinson remains out, and Isaiah Hartenstein is questionable after missing New York’s last game with an Achilles injury. If Hartenstein cannot start, then Jericho Sims will once again get the start. Denver will be without Julian Strawther and Vlatko Cancar, but backup point guard Reggie Jackson is probable.

Denver Nuggets vs. New York Knicks Key Matchups

Denver’s 3PT Shooting

Nikola Jokic is unstoppable in isolation, so it’s likely that New York often sends doubles. The Knicks already have trouble stopping corner attempts, and few teams can generate them like the Nuggets. Porter Jr, Murray, and Caldwell-Pope combine for a 40.6 3PT% on 16.5 attempts per game, so a normal shooting night from them would be difficult for New York to overcome.

Julius Randle’s Two-Way Play

Randle is New York’s second leading scorer, and they desperately need a quality outing from him tonight. He’s an unreliable outside shooter (30.6 3PT%, 5.3 3PA), but a decent performance from deep would be a boon for the Knicks. Meanwhile, his size will allow him to provide effective help against Nikola Jokic. He cannot allow Gordon to thrive as a dunker tonight too.

Braxton has been covering the NBA for Lineups since the 2022 season. He's worked with multiple collegiate coaching staffs regarding analytics and scouting, which has allowed him to understand the game on a deeper level. Braxton is also a contributor at Thunderous Intentions.

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