Nuggets head south
Denver will travel to Atlanta after an embarrassing loss to the Washington Wizards Saturday. Monday’s game in Atlanta is the Nuggets fourth game of their current five-game road trip, which they have posted a 1-2 record on so far.
Denver has been bludgeoned on defense as of late, allowing 92 points to the Wizards bench unit and 130 points against the Houston Rockets.
Despite their struggles on defense, the Nuggets travel to Atlanta with the second-best record in the Western Conference and as heavy favorites. Denver is -7.5 favorites tonight versus the Hawks.
These two teams squared off earlier this season, and dynamic guard Trae Young propelled the struggling Hawks to an upset victory in Denver. Young went off for 42 points, and 11 rebounds for one of Atlanta’s eight wins this season.
Atlanta ranks 23rd in points per game and 28th in defensive rating so far this season. While the Hawks have been one of the worst defensive teams in the NBA, the Nuggets have been one of the best.
The Nuggets own a defensive rating of 106.4, which is the 4th best mark in the Western Conference.
Besides Young, the Hawks are a youthful, developing team that has struggled this season. Denver is more talented than the Hawks in every aspect and should win this game handily.
That said, the Nuggets are notorious for let-down losses, like earlier this season versus the Hawks and just last weekend versus the Wizards.
Still, the public is riding with Denver as 70% of bets are heading towards the Nuggets ATS.
The Over/Under for this game opened at 218, but has since spiked to 223, with the 73% of public money shuffling towards the over.
Both the Nuggets and Hawks have losing records against the spread, combining for a 30-28-3 record ATS.
Denver is just 2-6-2 in their last 10 games ATS and is 12-16-3 when favored ATS this season.
The Nuggets have hit the over in eight of their last 10 games, but are 16-19 overall this season.
Atlanta has surpassed the over just four times in their last 10 games. That said, the Nuggets just surrendered nearly 100 points to a weak Wizards team, and Young was on fire the last time these two teams met.
Denver will need to lockdown Young on defense, and take advantage of the young Hawks on offense should they want to win in Atlanta.
In regards to injuries, Jamal Murray (right finger sprain) and Paul Millsap (left knee contusion) are both probably to play for Denver tonight.
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