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Time to Schein: Donovan Mitchell and Jamal Murray’s epic showdown

The Denver Nuggets and the Utah Jazz have entertained fans with a thrilling six-game battle in the first round, as Jamal Murray and Donovan Mitchell have performed at an extremely high level on the offensive end. On Tuesday evening, the best-of-seven series reaches its conclusion, with Game 7 on the horizon and both teams needing to win to avoid elimination from the 2020 NBA Playoffs. The Nuggets will be without Will Barton (knee) in Game 7, with Ed Davis (knee) and Justin Wright-Foreman (not with team) ruled out for the Jazz.

William Hill lists this 8:30 p.m. ET matchup in Orlando as a pick’em in the latest Nuggets vs. Jazz odds. The over-under for total points expected is 217.5, down from opening at 220. Before making any Jazz vs. Nuggets picks, be sure to see the NBA predictions from SportsLine’s proven computer model.

The SportsLine Projection Model simulates every NBA game 10,000 times, and it’s already returned over $5,000 in profit on its top-rated NBA picks this season. It entered the week on a blistering 60-33 run on top-rated NBA spread picks, returning almost $2,400 on those picks alone. It’s also a sizzling 10-2 on top-rated picks since the NBA’s restart in July. Anybody who has followed it has seen huge returns.

Now, the model has set its sights on Nuggets vs. Jazz. You can visit SportsLine now to see the picks. Here are the NBA odds from William Hill and trends for Jazz vs. Nuggets:

  • Nuggets vs. Jazz spread: Pick’em
  • Nuggets vs. Jazz over-under: 217.5 points
  • Nuggets vs. Jazz money line: Nuggets -110, Jazz -110
  • DEN: The Nuggets are 6-4 against the spread in the last 10 games
  • UTAH: The Jazz are 4-6 against the spread in the last 10 games

Why the Nuggets can cover

Prior to this series, Murray was a talented player with flashes of brilliance on his resume. In the last six games, though, Murray has made a leap, averaging 34.0 points, 6.7 assists and 6.2 rebounds per game overall and a robust 47.3 points per game in the last three contests. Though his efficiency is unsustainable long-term, Murray has the hot hand, and Nikola Jokic, averaging 25.7 points, 7.2 rebounds and 5.7 assists in the series, gives Denver a star facilitator. Overall, the Nuggets have manhandled Utah’s defense, averaging more than 1.2 points per possession in the series, and Denver ranks in the top four in the NBA Playoffs in both offensive rebounding and assist-to-turnover ratio. 

Defensively, it is more of a mixed bag for Denver, dating back to the regular season with a league-average mark in points allowed per possession. Still, the Nuggets have been markedly better in the last two games, allowing 10 points fewer per 100 possessions when compared to the full series, and the return of Gary Harris pays dividends on the defensive side of the court. 

Why the Jazz can cover 

Though Utah hasn’t been quite as dominant in the last two games, the Jazz still boast the best offensive rating in the NBA Playoffs 2020. Utah is scoring 1.25 points per possession against Denver and, in a regular season context, that would be the league’s best mark by a wide margin. Mitchell, averaging 38.7 points and 5.5 assists per game, is leading the way in effective fashion for Utah, with Mike Conley also scoring 22.8 points per game and shooting 60.7 percent from 3-point distance. 

In addition to the team’s overall offensive output, the Jazz lead the NBA Playoffs in both effective field-goal percentage and true shooting percentage, consistently generating good looks at the basket and converting them. On the defensive end, the Jazz have been susceptible to a star breakout from Murray, but Utah is doing an adequate job at defending others near the rim. Utah can also take solace in a top-10 defense from the regular season, and the fact that the Jazz have the better point differential through the first six games.

How to make Nuggets vs. Jazz picks

SportsLine’s model is leaning over on the total, with Murray and Mitchell projected to exceed their regular season scoring averages. The model also says one side of the spread hits almost 60 percent of the time. You can only get the pick at SportsLine. 

So who wins Nuggets vs. Jazz? And which side of the spread hits almost 60 percent of the time? Visit SportsLine now to see which side of the Jazz vs. Nuggets spread to jump on, all from the advanced model that is up over $5,000 on its top-rated NBA picks this season, and find out.


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