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Los Angeles Lakers versus Denver Nuggets Game 3 Preview

Los Angeles Lakers Basketball

Expect More Highlights from the Lakers and Nuggets Tonight

The series between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Denver Nuggets is heating up as we take on all the details for the 3rd game of the Western Conference Finals in the NBA Playoffs. Last game, we were able to witness the heroics of Anthony Davis with his last-second game-winner to give the Lakers a 2-0 cushion against Nikola Jokic and the Nuggets. 

TIME: 9:00 p.m. ET. TV: ESPN; BETTING LINE: LAKERS -6.5 / TOTAL 214 *

The Lakers barely survived on Sunday Night with a 105-103 victory over the Nuggets, who took a small lead with a push during the last minute of the match. The Lakers controlled most of the game as they dominated their rivals in almost every category, for example, they had more rebounds (44:31), assists (23:22), blocked shots (7:4), 3PM (13:8), and overall field goals (37:35).

The problem for the Lakers was that Denver was able to stay in the game by going to the free-throw line more often, having more steals, and committing fewer turnovers. 

Individually, Lebron James took control of the match by scoring the majority of his points during the 1st quarter. However, James slowed down a bit during the rest of the match as he ended the game with 26 points, 11 boards, and 4 assists. Anthony Davis became the game’s MVP as he finished with 31 points and 9 boards, plus was proclaimed the night’s hero with his Mamba heroics during the last play of the game. 

For the Nuggets, they had the usual production from their star players with 30 points for Nikola Jokic and 25 points for Jamal Murray. Rookie sensation, Michael Porter Jr, also had a decent night with 15 points on 67% shooting from the field. The problem with the Nuggets here is that we became accustomed to seeing Murray go on a scoring tear with 40+ points on a nightly basis, so it’s difficult for him to keep it up for such a long run. 

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Lebron James has never lost a playoff series after being up 2-0

The Nuggets are a motivated team who tend to pick up their game when the odds are against them, which should be worrisome for Los Angeles. However, Lebron James has never lost a series when leading 2-0, but you never know as streaks have to end at some point, and the Nuggets are potential suitors for this feat.

We remind you that the Nuggets, coached by Mike Malone, just came back from a 3-1 deficit against the Clippers in the previous round. Plus, you could see a change in strategy on Sunday night where they relied on Jokic to make a comeback, so it’s a strategy they might use more often tonight. 

For Denver to be able to steal a this upcoming game, they need their role players to pick up the slack (Yes, we are talking about you Garry Harris and Paul Millsap), as we can’t expect for their main guys to do everything.

The spread favors the Lakers by -6.5 points, but that still doesn’t mean it’s a loss cause for them, they just need a few adjustments here and there. For example, they need to place more bodies on A.D. to try and slow him down and tire him out, that in turn will put pressure on Lebron James to have to put in some big numbers. They will however, need big a big game from Murray, so he’ll need to take even more shots that he already does. 

Our recommendation is to bet on the Nuggets for this game as we feel they might be able to get the “W” or at least put up a fight and cover the spread.

The Dart Throw: Nuggets 112-108 Lakers

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Dirty has been an employee or owner of some of the top online sports gambling forums since 1998. He worked at EOG.com from it's inception until 2008 when he left and opened GamblingIQ and then in 2012 opened Handicappers Hidaway. He has written hundreds af articles over the years and always has his "Dirty Dozen" College Football poll up starting the first week of October.
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