- What: LA Clippers vs. Denver Nuggets
- Date: Thursday, January 5, 2023
- Location: Ball Arena in Denver, Colorado
- Time: 10:00 p.m. ET
- How to Watch: Bally Sports SoCal, ClipperVision, TNT
An important NBA Western Conference matchup takes place tonight in Colorado when the Northwest Conference-leading Denver Nuggets play host to the Pacific Division’s second-place team, the LA Clippers. This is the second meeting of the 2023 NBA season between these two teams. Denver won their November matchup 114-104 in LA.
Denver, who is the No. 1 team in the Western Conference as the 2023 NBA season heads toward its halfway mark, has a 24-13 record on the season and while they have been an excellent home team (14-3), they are an average road team (10-10). As for LA, they are 21-18 on the season and playing better at home (11-8) than they have played on the road (10-10).
Before diving into the betting breakdown for tonight’s matchup, January 5, 2023, between the LA Clippers and the Denver Nuggets, check out our guide to betting on the 2023 NBA Finals and our tips for betting on the NBA.
LA Clippers vs. Denver Nuggets picks
LA Clippers breakdown
The L.A. Clippers began the 2023 NBA season with two wins. The wheels fell off after that, with the club dropping four straight. Things had been going fairly well for the Clippers since then, with their worst stretch being a 3-6 run between November 23 and December 8, but the team enters tonight’s game against the Nuggets on a three-game losing skid.
Paul George leads the Clippers in points (24.2), assists (5.3), steals (1.6) and minutes (34.6). The team’s second-highest scorer is Kawhi Leonard at 17. 3 points per game, but Normal Powell (15), Marcus Morris Sr. (13.4) and Reggie Jackson (12.1) are helping in that department as well.
The Clippers are the third-lowest-scoring team in the NBA this season, averaging 109.5 points per game. However, LA is much better at putting up points on the road, where they average 113.7. The Clippers average points per game on the road. As for road-scoring defense, the team also averages 113.7 per game in that department.
George and Leonard are both listed as questionable for tonight’s game in Denver. George has a hamstring issue, while Leonard is marked as illness on the injury report. George played 34 minutes in LA’s Monday loss to Miami, while Leonard has not played since the team’s New Year’s Eve loss to Indiana.
Denver Nuggets breakdown
The Denver Nuggets did not lose more than two games in a row until they dropped three straight in early December. Since then, the team has gone 10-3 and has not lost back-to-back. Denver, who has not lost at home since falling 116-115 against Dallas on December 6, is coming off a 124-111 road loss to Minnesota on Monday.
As expected, two-time defending NBA MVP Nikola Jokic is setting the pace for the Nuggets. The 27-year-old superstar leads the team in points (25.6), rebounds (10.8), assists (9.5), steals (1.4) and minutes (33.6). Outside of Jokic, the Nuggets have a handful of players who are contributing more than 10 points per game. Those players are Jamal Murray (18), Aaron Gordon (17.1), Michael Porter Jr. (16.7), Bones Hyland (13.4), Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (11.4) and Bruce Brown (11.4)
Denver’s points per game at home is in the top five in the NBA this season at 119.1, while the club’s defensive points per game while playing at Ball Arena is 109.9.
If the Clippers have Paul George and Kawhi Leonard on the court tonight they will help the team. However, even with their two best players, the Clippers are not playing as well as the Nuggets. The best bet for tonight’s NBA Western Conference matchup between the Denver Nuggets and the LA Clippers is to pick the Nuggets to win.
Pick: Denver Nuggets to beat the LA Clippers.
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