The Los Angeles Lakers (43-39, 23-18 home) hope to live another day and avoid elimination against the Denver Nuggets (53-29, 19-22 away) in Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals. The Nuggets have built up a 3-0 advantage to put themselves one victory away from their first trip to the NBA Finals in franchise history.
Monday’s tipoff is at 8:30 p.m. EST start time inside crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles, California. The Lakers are a 3-point favorite, while the over/under total is 224.5 points.
What to Know – Denver Nuggets
The Nuggets are on the verge of making franchise history and can accomplish the historic season with a win in Game 4. Denver has dominated the series and come into Monday’s contest after a 119-108 win, their largest margin of victory in the series, on Saturday night.
On offense, Denver has averaged 116.6 points per game in the postseason, shooting 49.1% from the field and 38.8% from the 3-point line. Defensively, the Nuggets allow 107.9 ppg, 47.3% shooting from the floor and 33.9% from beyond the arc.
The play of Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray have spearheaded the Nuggets offense this postseason. The duo have combined to average just shy of 50% of Denver’s points per game total. Jokic leads the way, scoring 29.9 ppg while Murray adds 27.9 ppg.
Denver is 52-43-1 against the spread this year and 22-25 ATS on the road. The Nuggets are 1-4-1 ATS over their last six contests against the Los Angeles Lakers.
What to Know – Los Angeles Lakers
The Lakers have no room for error now if Los Angeles wants to advance to their second NBA Finals in four seasons. The loss on Saturday at home was the first dropped home playoff game of this postseason for the Lakers.
Los Angeles is scoring 112.4 ppg thanks to a 47.2% shooting effort from the floor and 33.2% from deep. The Lakers defense is surrendering 109.7 ppg, 43.6% shooting from the field, and 34.9% from three.
LeBron James and Anthony Davis lead the Lakers offense, but it’s been the sharp-shooting of Austin Reaves that’s been the surprise of the series. Reaves is shooting 56.5% from three (13-of-23) and averaging 22.7 ppg against the Nuggets.
Los Angeles features a 50-46-2 record ATS and a 27-21-1 record ATS on their home court. The Lakers have covered the spread in five of their previous seven playoff contests.
The Pick is In
James and Davis are both listed as game time decisions for Monday’s game but expect the veterans to suit up. The biggest question mark is how much left the Lakers have in the tank.
There won’t be any quit from the Los Angeles squad, but this Nuggets roster is just better at this point. We like Denver to pull away in the second half and pull out the victory to punch their ticket to their first NBA Finals.
The Pick: Denver Nuggets +3