An offensive explosion led to a thrilling Game 1, and the Lakers-Nuggets Game 2 matchup is set-up to be another great game.
Denver’s potent offensive was hot, scoring 132 points on the Lakers D, but LA showed they had enough firepower to keep up.
After a few bad beats in our Game 1 predictions, let’s get hot with our Game 2 picks.
All odds, lines, and spreads are provided courtesy of BetMGM.
Best Picks for Lakers-Nuggets Game 2
Nuggets -5.5, -110
Nikola Jokic is the best player in the world. He has been for quite some time, but it’s now on full display.
— NBA (@NBA) May 17, 2023
Denver hasn’t lost at home since March 30th, a game that saw Jokic sit out. The Nuggets haven’t lost at home with Jokic since March 12th.
If that doesn’t make your jaw drop, this will.
During its 9-game win streak at home, Denver has been winning by an average margin of 12 points. By the way, 7 of those wins are in the playoffs.
This is not an easy feat.
The Lakers have done a very good job winning on the road this postseason, and they made some stout adjustments in Game 1. But Denver is a buzzsaw.
Rui Hachimura will not lock-down Nikola Jokic for 48 minutes.
The Nuggets won’t let Anthony Davis sit in the paint and disrupt their offense that way.
It would be surprising if the Lakers managed to steal Game 2.
Under 226.5, -105
After an astounding 258 points scored in Game 1, the over will be getting hammered up until tipoff.
Don’t fall into the trap.
The Nuggets have hit under this mark 4/7 times in the playoffs.
Los Angeles also needs to slow down Denver’s offense in order to win some games.
A 126-point performance in a loss is cute, but Darvin Ham’s squad has to buckle down on defense to compete.
Now, Denver could come out firing like they did in Game 1, and we could see another shootout, but teams win championships by making adjustments, not playing the same game twice in a row.
Nuggets 1Q ML, -160
Denver has led after the first quarter in five straight games and 7/12 overall in the playoffs.
It’s a slightly risky bet given the odds, but it’s not risky in the sense that the Nuggets have started hot recently.
For LA to win the first, it’ll take either a spectacular defensive performance or a lights-out shooting quarter. Neither of which seems very plausible in Denver.
Parlay of the Game for Lakers-Nuggets Game 2
Aaron Gordon OVER 14.5 Points,
Anthony Davis OVER 24.5 Points,
Nikola Jokic OVER 50 Points+Rebounds+Assists,
This parlay could go into the “Craziest Odds” section, but hear me out.
Denver is projected to win, so picking their moneyline isn’t ludicrous.
The Aaron Gordon line is a crazy bet as he hasn’t scored 15+ in five consecutive games and only twice in the last 10 games. However, he is due.
Gordon averaged 16 points per game this year, and he will likely have a favorable matchup in Game 2.
If LA goes back to Hachimura on Jokic and leaves Davis on Gordon, he will stretch the floor to keep AD out of the paint.
This will lead to more three-point attempts by Gordon, and he can hopefully knock a few down.
shading Aaron Gordon, cheating just enough that he’s involved in every rim action while still being comfortable closing out. AG better be practicing that corner 3 for the next 48 hours to make them pay because it’s going to be there all night Game 2.
— Rob Perez (@WorldWideWob) May 17, 2023
The Unibrow Paradox has been uprooted, and AD is playing great offensively. Expect another nice scoring night from him.
The Jokic line is ludicrous for anyone else in the league, but he’s done it in eight of his last ten games.
This bet is a longshot, but it’s plausible.
Craziest Odds for Lakers-Nuggets Game 2
LeBron James to Score 40+, +1250
Anthony Davis to Score 40+, +1500
The last time LeBron James scored 40+ in a game? January 28th.
The last time Anthony Davis scored 40+ in a game? Game 1.
Is an explanation even necessary here?
Aaron Gordon, Top Point Scorer, +10,000
Yes, it’s highly unlikely Aaron Gordon leads the game in points.
But +10,000? That’s a fun bet to throw $5 on.
Free Picks for Lakers-Nuggets Game 2
In addition to the Best Picks, the Parlay of the Game, and the Craziest Odds, here are a few more free bets ahead of Game 2.