The Denver Nuggets travel to Motor City to take on the Detroit Pistons on Monday night at the Little Caesars Arena in Detroit.
The Nuggets will be sending only one player to this year’s All-Star game but their coaching staff will represent the Western Conference in the mid-season classic. The Nuggets’ 107-106 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Saturday pushed them to a tie with the Golden State Warriors for the best record in the league and ensured that Mike Malone will be the coach from the West in the 2019 NBA All-Star game.
Nikola Jokic is the lone All-Star for the Nuggets. Jokic is averaging 20.2 points, 10.5 rebounds, 7.7 assists and 1.4 steals per game this season. Jamal Murray is scoring 18.5 points per game but is out with an ankle injury. Gary Harris’s 14.8 points per game is also questionable with a groin injury. Will Barton is the next man up with 13.0 points per game while veteran Paul Millsap has been steady with 12.6 points and 6.5 rebounds per game for Denver.
The Nuggets are 15th in the league in scoring at 111.9 points per game. Denver is 3rd overall in passing with 27.4 assists per game and they are 7th in rebounding at 46.6 boards per contest. The Nuggets are also ranked 5th in scoring defense with just 106.1 points per game allowed.
The Detroit Pistons opened the season at 4-0 and then improved to 13-7 with a win over the defending champions Golden State Warriors on December 1st. But the Pistons have gone on a rough patch as they have tumbled to 22-29 on the season. The Pistons are currently 1-2 SU on a four-game home stand and they have lost 10 out of their last 15 games at home. They hope to even out and get back on track but will be hard-pressed to do so against the best team in NBA.
Blake Griffin was named to the All-Star team and rightfully so. Griffin is averaging 26.2 points, 6.9 rebounds and 5.3 assists per game. His frontcourt partner Andre Drummond is having a double-double season with 16.6 points and a league-best 14.9 rebounds per game. Reggie Jackson is helping out with 14.6 points per game while Reggie Bullock is also chipping in with 12.0 points per game.
Detroit is scoring 105.5 points per game and they are ranked 25th in scoring offense. The Pistons are 26th in passing with 22.1 dimes per contest and Detroit is also 13th in rebounding with 45.4 boards per outing. The Pistons have the 9th best scoring defense in the league at 108.3 points per game allowed.
The Nuggets have won six games in a row and are 8-2 SU in their last 10 games played. Denver is 3-1 SU in their last four road games. The Pistons are 4-6 SU in their last 10 games played and 3-3 SU in their last six home games played. Head to head, the Nuggets are 6-4 SU in their last 10 meetings but the Pistons are 6-4 SU in their last 10 encounters versus the Nuggets in Detroit.
Jamal Murray and Gary Harris are questionable to play in this contest but the Nuggets got 20 point games from Malik Beasley and Will Barton in their last win against the Timberwolves. Denver also got 22 from Torrey Craig and 35 from Beasley during their win against the Rockets last Friday so it has been the next man up mentality working for them right now. With Jokic doing it all, the Nuggets are hard to stop right now as they have their sights set at the best record in the West.
The Pistons have lost five out of their last seven games but they may be demoralized right now after bowing a 25 point lead and losing to the Los Angeles Clippers last Saturday 101-111. Head coach Dwane Casey called it a devastating loss while Blake Griffin said it was probably their worst loss of the season. Sure they are at home for this game but they have not played well here either going 2-8-1 ATS in their last 11.
Denver is the real deal with Jokic doing it all and the rest of the team stepping up amidst the injuries. Detroit is reeling right now and may still be hurting after their loss to the Clippers. I’m picking the Denver Nuggets to beat the Detroit Pistons on 2/4/19.
Denver is 6-4 ATS in their last 10 games played. The Nuggets are 1-3 ATS in their last four road games. Detroit is 4-5-1 ATS in their last 10 games played. The Pistons are 2-4 ATS in their last six home games. Head to head, the Pistons are 3-1 ATS in their last 10 meetings against the Nuggets and are 6-4 ATS in their last 10 games against Denver when playing in Detroit.
The Nuggets are just 1-4 ATS in their last five road games but Denver is 4-1 ATS in their last five games after scoring more than 100 points in their previous game and 5-0 ATS in their last five games against the East. The Pistons are 3-8 ATS in their last 11 games after a double digit home loss, 2-8-1 in their last 11 games against teams with winning records and 0-4 ATS in their last four home games. Denver isn’t the best team on the road but the Pistons’ struggles at home are notorious. I can’t trust Detroit against the best team in the West. Prediction: Nuggets -4
The over is 7-3 in Denver’s last 10 games played. The total has gone under in three out of the last four road games played by the Nuggets. The under is 7-2-1 in the last 10 games played by the Pistons. The total has gone under in four out of their last six home games played. Head to head, the under is 7-3 in the last 10 games between these two teams.
The under is 7-1 in the last eight eight meetings between these two teams and 4-0 in their last four meetings in Detroit. The total has gone under in five out of the last six road games played by the Nuggets while the under is 6-0 in the Pistons’ last six games when playing on one day rest and 4-0 in their last four games after a double-digit loss. Denver is missing key scorers while the Pistons are struggling right now, I like the under in this game. Prediction: Under 209