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Buy On Denver Nuggets Odds To Win The NBA Championship

Adam Thompson for Bookies.com

Adam Thompson  | 5 mins

Buy On Denver Nuggets Odds To Win The NBA Championship

The Denver Nuggets are the No. 3 team in the Western Conference, but you wouldn’t know it by the NBA futures odds out there.

At +1400, the Nuggets are far behind the Lakers and Clippers on the NBA Western Conference odds. They’re not even the third team on the board — the Houston Rockets are way ahead of them as well (+750), while the Mavericks and Jazz are nearly even. In the NBA championship odds, they’re behind the Philadelphia 76ers, the No. 6 seed in the East.

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Does that mean we can find considerable value on the Nuggets or do the oddsmakers have them right where they should be? Here is a breakdown of Denver’s chances and whether to buy or sell on the Nuggets.

Success vs. The Best

Buy On Denver Nuggets Odds To Win The NBA Championship 1

The Western Conference is loaded with contenders, with six or seven teams (or more) making a viable claim why it should be considered in the mix.

The Nuggets are one of those teams, and they’ve handled themselves against the other top teams of the West. Denver is .500 or better against the Clippers, Jazz, Thunder and Rockets, and 1-2 vs. the Lakers, with the last loss in overtime.

If seeds play out, the No. 3 Nuggets would face the No. 6 Rockets in an epic first-round matchup. They each won two games against each other this season.

They Need To Show Up

One somewhat-odd anomaly on Nuggets games is when they lose, they lose big. Denver is 7-6 vs. the other elite Western teams. Discounting the overtime loss to the Lakers, the other five losses were by an average of 18 points per game.

The lack of consistency is a concern. When the Nuggets show up, they can beat anyone. When they don’t, it can get ugly.

Health Critical

Buy On Denver Nuggets Odds To Win The NBA Championship 2

Nikola Jokic is a tough-to-defend star, a center with legit three-point range and elite passing skills for a big man. He averages 20.4 points, 10.1 rebounds, 7.0 assists, 1.2 steals and 0.7 blocks per game — each of those lead the team. He’s played every game for Denver.

Jamal Murray and Will Barton have each missed time, but they are needed if the Nuggets are to survive and advance in the West. Murray averages 18.8 ppg and 4.8 apg, second behind Jokic in both. In the nine games he’s missed against teams currently in Orlando, the Nuggets were a mediocre 5-4.

Barton, the No. 3 scorer (15.1), top 3-point shooter, No. 2 rebounder (6.3) and No. 3 in assists (3.7), has missed eight games. The team is 5-3 vs. bubble teams, though two of those wins were in overtime.

When all three take the court, the Nuggets are 33-15 — a .688 win percentage that ranks above the Clippers.

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Buy Or Sell Nuggets?

Regular Season

The Nuggets are a stellar 37-13 straight-up when favored and a half-decent 8-10 when the underdogs. Picking a side has proven challenging on Denver games.

Against the spread, Denver is a so-so 31-33-4, including 23-24-3 as the favorite and 8-9-1 as the underdog. On a night-by-night basis, oddsmakers appear to have the Nuggets figured out. Sell on riding the Nuggets.

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Western Conference +1400 (BetMGM)

Denver has proven it can hang with the top teams in the West. If the Nuggets end up staying at No. 3, a first-round matchup with either the Thunder or Rockets is likely. Either way it’s a mixed bag, going 1-1 vs. OKC and 2-2 vs. Houston.

A rise to the No. 2 seed means a showdown with the No. 7 Mavericks. Luka Doncic and Co. beat Denver in two of three meetings, though one was in OT and Denver was without Barton.

Denver is worthy to be included in the mix. But there is reason to be uncertain on their prospects. They could win out, they could lose in the first round. Sell on these low odds at BetMGM.

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NBA Title +3000 (DraftKings)

While we’re selling on Western Conference futures, the Nuggets’ NBA title odds are more than double.

It’s possible Denver bows out early. But it’s also possible they get hot and stay healthy, and they’ve proven the ability to beat any team on the board. Remember, most of Denver’s losses against top teams have been by wide margin. When the Nuggets are on their game, they win.

We saw it in two matchups with the Milwaukee Bucks, each double-digit wins (the Bucks didn’t play any of their top guys in one of those games). Jokic didn’t lead the team in scoring in either game; Barton and Murray did.

In games decided by eight points or less against the top West teams, the Nuggets are 0-2 vs. the Lakers but 6-0 against the rest. The beat the Lakers by 24 in the other regular-season meeting. They have what it takes to run the table. Buy on the high odds to win it all at DraftKings.

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About the Author

Adam Thompson for Bookies.com
Adam Thompson
NFL writer and expert Adam Thompson joined Bookies.com in 2019 after a successful run as senior handicapper for SportsLine and CBSSports.com. He's long been established as one of the nation's premier handicappers, specializing in the NFL where he's hit on more than 60% over the past three years. Adam's NBA, PGA and horse racing picks have also produced major winners over the last 12 months. His customized NFL and NBA odds for players and teams have been picked up by hundreds of websites over the past year.