On Wednesday night, the Phoenix Suns will play host to the Denver Nuggets for Game 2 of their Western Conference Semifinals series.
Let’s take a closer look at the top Nuggets vs. Suns Game 2 player prop picks and make some predictions for this June 9, 2021 NBA Playoffs matchup.
Nuggets vs. Suns Game 2 Player Props (June 9, 2021)
The collective eyes of the basketball world will be focused on the lone game on the NBA slate Wednesday night as the Phoenix Suns will look to take a 2-0 series lead over the visiting Denver Nuggets at the Talking Stick Resort Arena. Although Denver took a one-point lead into halftime, the Suns unleashed an offensive flurry in the second half, outscoring the Nuggets by 18 points en route to a 122-105 victory.
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The Suns featured a well-balanced scoring attack in the series opener, with all five starters finishing in double figures. Mikal Bridges led the way with 23 points, while Chris Paul and Devin Booker contributed 21 points apiece, big man Deandre Ayton put up 20 points, and forward Jae Crowder chipped in 14 points of his own. It remains to be seen if Phoenix will take a similar approach in Game 2 or if their backcourt duo of Booker and Paul will see an uptick in field goal attempts.
The Denver Nuggets were led in the loss by recently-named league MVP Nikola Jokić, who put up 22 points, pulled down 9 rebounds, and dished out 3 assists. Aaron Gordon (18), Michael Porter Jr. (15), Facundo Campazzo (14), and JaMychal Green (10) all joined Jokić with double-digit contributions.
Will the Suns take a strong 2-0 lead in this semifinals series or will the NBA MVP get the job done for his squad?
DeAndre Ayton to Record a Double-Double (-110, BetMGM)
When most people think about the Phoenix Suns, the first two names that come to mind are Devin Booker and his backcourt mate Chris Paul. The former has the ability to flip a game on its head with a scoring explosion, while the latter has shown time and time again the ability to elevate his team to a level above preseason expectations. However, one of the Suns’ most important players is former #1 overall pick DeAndre Ayton, whose ability to man the paint and control the glass cannot be overstated.
Ayton played a critical role in Phoenix’s Game 1 victory, racking up 20 points and pulling down 10 rebounds in just under 37 minutes of game action. Including the three regular season meetings with the Nuggets this season, Ayton has put up a double-double in all four contests against the team from the Mile High City. In fact, Ayton averaged 22 points and 12.3 rebounds in each of those three regular season meetings, which gives reason to believe that Ayton’s Game 1 performance could be indicative of what’s to come in Game 2.
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Nikola Jokić to Score 30+ Points (-116, FanDuel Sportsbook)
It was announced on Tuesday that Nuggets big man Nikola Jokić had been named the league’s Most Valuable Player. Given the fact that Wednesday night’s matchup between the Suns and Nuggets was the only game on the schedule, it stood to reason that a high viewership would tune in for the contest. However, the added storyline that the league’s MVP could fall behind 2-0 in a series is sure to draw in more casual fans, who will want to see what the 26-year-old Serbian can do to level the series.
Jokić had a good game in Game 1, but it was far from an MVP-caliber performance. Jokić shot just 10-23 (43.5%) from the field and did not attempt a single free throw, the first time that’s happened since April 1. In Denver’s first round series against the Portland Trail Blazers, Jokić put up at least 34 points in five of six contests. The lone outlier in that series came in a 20-point Game 4 loss in which Jokić played just 26:41.
Although he failed to scored 30 points in the first regular season matchup against the Suns, Jokić averaged 30 points per game in the other two contests. If Denver is to have any chance of drawing level in this series, they’ll need it to come in a big performance from the NBA MVP.
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Mikal Bridges to Make Over 1.5 Three-Point Field Goals (-213, FOX Bet)
He might not get all the headlines, but few young players in the NBA have seen their star burn brighter than that of forward Mikal Bridges. The Suns’ rising star scored 23 points on 8-12 shooting from the field, including a playoff-high 4-8 from beyond the arc. Bridges has been excellent in his first postseason run, including his shooting from downtown.
In seven playoff games, Bridges has made at least 2 three-point field goals in six games. Overall, Bridges has shot 17-42 (40.5%) from beyond the arc. Excluding a 1-6 performance in Game 6 against the Lakers, Bridges has shot 44.4% from deep. Even more impressively, Bridges has connected on multiple three-point field goals in 16 of his last 19 games dating back to April 26.
If you’re feeling extra bullish on Bridges’ ability to connect from downtown, you can get Bridges to make over 2.5 three-pointers at +145 odds at FOX Bet. Keep in mind that Bridges made at least four three-point field goals in two of three regular season meetings against the Nuggets.