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Two struggling Western Conference teams with playoff hopes for this season are clashing today, when the Denver Nuggets (20-17), who want to turn their latest victory into a streak, are hosting the Utah Jazz (16-22), who want to return to the winning ways.
Date/Time: 01-05-2018, 20:00 EDT
Spread: Denver Nuggets -7
Nuggets have a 20-17 record (18-18-1 against the spread) so far this season and currently sit in the 6th place of the West. In their last game they snapped a two-game losing streak by winning at home against the Suns with a 134-111 score, beating the odds. They are led in scoring by Gary Harris with 16.6 ppg, followed by Nikola Jokic with 16.2 ppg and a team high 10.2 rebounds per game, while Jamal Murray adds 15.7 ppg.
Jazz have a 16-22 record (19-19-0 against the spread) so far this season and currently sit on the 10th place of the West. They have lost four of their last five matches and in their last game they lost at home against the Pelicans with a 98-108 score, not beating the odds. They are led in scoring by the rookie Donovan Mitchell with 18.3 ppg, while Rodney Hood adds 17 ppg. Derrick Favors follows with 12.5 ppg and 6.7 rebounds per game.
This will be the third meeting between those two teams this season, with Jazz leading the Nuggets 2-1 and each team having won at home. Nuggets are 13-4 at home so far this season, while Jazz are 3-15 on the road. Nuggets are better offensively, scoring 107.9 ppg to Jazz’s 101.1, while Jazz are better defensively, allowing 101.7 ppg to Nuggets’ 105.9. Nuggets have a better field goal percentage, shooting with 46.6% to Jazz’s 44.8%, while Jazz have a better 3-point percentage, shooting with 37% to Nuggets’ 36.4%. Nuggets are better in rebounding, grabbing 45.6 to Jazz’s 40.4 and in assists made, with 23.6 to Jazz’s 21.2, while Jazz are better in turnovers committed (14.4 to 15.6). Nuggets are the favorite in this game and Vegas odds give them a -7 spread which they are expected to beat easily against an extremely inefficient on the road Jazz squad.
Utah Jazz vs Denver Nuggets Prediction: Denver Nuggets -7 (-109)