Image licensed from USA Today Sports
The Denver Nuggets play host the resurgent Charlotte Hornets on Wednesday night in the NBA. Both teams are in terrific form (the Hornets have won four straight while the Nuggets have won six of seven).
Charlotte in four-game winning streak
The Hornets have been stunning this season. Not so much because of their 20-18 season record but because they have stayed over 0.500 despite an apparent lack of depth. They are now on a four-game winning streak after beating Sacramento in the previous game 122-116.
What was said?
“I’m extremely proud of this group,” Hornets coach James Borrego said. “For some reason, we play our best basketball down the stretch and I guess, if there’s a time to pick your best basketball, it’s the last four or five minutes of the game. This group, they continue to fight.”
As reported by AP: Rozier and Hayward, who were a combined 13 of 13 from the foul line, helped ice the game with each making a pair of free throws in the closing seconds helping the Hornets outscore the Kings 21-8 in the final 5 1/2 minutes.
— Charlotte Hornets (@hornets) March 17, 2021
Denver continue to improve as season progresses
The Nuggets have won six of their last seven games to improve to 23-16 for the season. They are now 23-16 for the season, second in the Northwest Division behind Utah. They beat Indiana 121-106 in their previous game.
What was said?
“I knew they got in late so I just wanted to put my foot on the gas early to figure out if they was or wasn’t (tired), but I knew I was going to figure it out,” said Barton, who scored the first eight points of the game for Denver. “I was going to try to put them on their heels. I was going to find out one way or another if they were tired.”
According to AP, Monte Morris was out of the lineup for the second straight game with a quad strain. G Gary Harris missed his 12th straight game with a left adductor strain, while R.J. Hampton continues to be out due to health and safety protocols.
Tomorrow is our first matchup with @hornets in over a year.
— Denver Nuggets (@nuggets) March 17, 2021
Trends as seen on covers.com are:
Denver Nuggets are:
4-0 ATS in their last 4 games playing on 1 days rest.
5-2 ATS in their last 7 games overall.
5-2 ATS in their last 7 when their opponent allows 100 points or more in their previous game.
Charlotte Hornets are:
2-5 ATS in their last 7 games vs. a team with a winning straight-up record.
2-6 ATS in their last 8 games following a straight-up win.
The Bottom Line
What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
As good as the Hornets have been this season, they don’t quite have the same level of defensive skill as the Nuggets. Ball, Hayward, and the Hornets have been exceptional this season but there is a case to be made that the Nuggets are simply too strong at home. They have scored an average of 115.3 points per game, sixth in the NBA. The Hornets won’t have the ability to sustain that level of offensive excellence for 48 minutes. As a result, I’d take the Nuggets to win by seven or more.
Want another opinion on this pick?
Full-Game Total Pick
The Nuggets have historically been a tall team, capable of troubling offenses through that attribute alone. The Hornets have scored an average of 112.8 points per game, 15th in the NBA. That number is the main reason I’m taking the under in this game. The Nuggets might meet their season average of over 115 points per game but I doubt the Hornets will score over 110, which will keep this total just under.