San Antonio Spurs (-7, 205 o/u) at Denver Nuggets
At times this season, the Denver Nuggets (18-23, 12-9 home) have appeared to be able to compete with anyone. However, lately those moments are few and far between with the Brian Show-coached team currently on a three-game losing streak. Last night’s loss was an embarrassing 122-79 defeat against Golden State in which Denver was losing by 27 at halftime.
“We didn’t compete,” Shaw said. “We looked like we were scared. I’m trying to be guarded in what I’m saying because I don’t want to throw anybody under the bus, but I just don’t understand how as a team we can’t come out and compete when you’re playing the best team in the league.”
While the Nuggets are viewed as a rebuilding project, Shaw won’t use that as an excuse. The coach said last Saturday’s 113-105 home defeat to Minnesota still sticks in his craw.
“I guess it started with our loss the other night in Minnesota and carried over to tonight,” Shaw said. “Our schedule is only going to get tougher. And now is the time where we really need to hunker down and really go after it and it doesn’t seem like we’re doing it.”
The bad news for the Nuggets is the rested San Antonio Spurs (26-16, 11-10 away) come to town on a three-game winning streak.
“We have a great opportunity,” Tony Parker said. “We have two big games on the road and then we have a lot of games at home. It would be nice to take all those games because we have some catching up to do.”
With the second half of the season having just begun, the Spurs are looking to get healthy and in shape for the playoffs. Getting Kawhi Leonard, who had 12 points and nine rebounds this weekend against Utah, back healthy is key.
“He always impacts a game,” said Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich. “Whether it’s the person he’s guarding or giving help and making a steal, rebounding the basketball, scoring; he always has an impact on the game.”
ATS this season, the Spurs are 6-6 as an away favorite, while the Nuggets are 3-4 as a home dog. That’s why taking the Spurs and laying the points (-7) is the play.
(Photo credit: Keith Allison from Baltimore, USA (RO9A3690) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons. Photo has been cropped.)