Stephen Nover’s NBA Free Friday Play

On December 8, 2017, in Free Picks, NBA, by Stephen

Nuggets at Magic Under 219

I expect the Nuggets to play much better defense than they did in their last game, a 123-114 road loss to the Pelicans on Wednesday. Orlando doesn’t have a dominant big man such as DeMarcus Cousins, who ate up the Nuggets underneath. Denver is not going to look to past fast either as this is its third road game in five days.

Denver loses inside defense with Nikola Jokic and Paul Millsap both out. But the Nuggets also lose much of their inside scoring as those are the Nuggets’ second and third leading scorers. The loss of Jokic and Millsap puts a lot of scoring pressure on Denver’s backcourt and its guards are erratic.

The Magic’s offense took a major hit with Evan Fournier suffering a sprainked ankle during the team’s last game. Fourier is out. So not only do the Magic lose their second-leading scorer and top 3-point shooter, but their delicate offensive balance is thrown out of whack.

Orlando will be missing swingman Terrence Ross and forward Jonathan Isaac, too. I don’t see a lot of scoring coming from Aaron Afflalo, D.J. Augustin, Wes Iwundu and Shelvin Mack, who all gain more minutes because of the injuries.

Neither team gets much scoring, or good shooting, from their point guards.


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