NBA Futures

GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS (47-36) at DENVER NUGGETS (58-25) Sportsbook.ag Line & Total: Denver -8 & 207
2013-04-23

Denver PG Andre Miller hit an acrobatic reverse lay-up with less than two seconds remaining to cap off a 28-point night and give his team a 97-95 win in Saturday's Game 1. Not only did Golden State lose the game, but they also lost All-Star PF David Lee to a torn right hip flexor in the fourth quarter that will keep him out for the remainder of the postseason. The Nuggets were also missing their starting PF Kenneth Faried (ankle), but he might be able to return to the court on Tuesday for the first time since April 14. Both teams finished the regular season strong, as the Warriors won 10 of their final 15 games (SU and ATS) while the Nuggets closed the season with eight wins in their final nine contests (5-4 ATS). With Saturday's tight victory, Denver has now won four of the five meetings (3-2 ATS) between these teams this season, and is a remarkable 39-3 SU (28-14 ATS) at Pepsi Center, including 24 straight home wins. Golden State is only 19-23 SU (20-21-1 ATS) on the road this season, but is now 5-2 ATS in its past seven away games.

Golden State had little trouble putting up points this season with 101.2 PPG (7th in NBA) on 45.8percent FG (11th in league) and an NBA-best 40.3percent three-point clip. In Game 1, they fell well below all of those averages with 95 points on 41percent FG and 36percent threes. Despite holding teams to 43.9percent FG (4th in NBA) and 34.7percent threes (7th in league), the Warriors still allowed 100.3 PPG overall (19th in NBA) and 107.5 PPG in the season series, so they were pleased to hold Denver to 97 points. Golden State committed the third-most turnovers in the league (14.8 TOPG), but was strong on the glass with a +2.3 RPG margin (8th in NBA). Both of these trends held true on Saturday when the team committed 17 turnovers but dominated the boards with a 55-45 rebounding edge. PF David Lee and C Andrew Bogut were the biggest reason their team fared so well on the boards in Game 1, pulling down 14 rebounds apiece. With Lee leading the NBA with 56 double-doubles in the regular season, eight more than any other player, his absence will surely be felt. Lee also crushed Denver during the regular season with 23.3 PPG (56percent FG), 10.3 RPG, 5.0 APG and 2.3 steals per game. Bogut and PF Carl Landry will be asked to score more in the paint. Bogut netted just nine points on Saturday, but blocked four shots and posted a team-best +10 rating. Landry came off the bench to score 14 points with five rebounds in 24 minutes. PG Stephen Curry set an NBA record for most three-pointers made in a season (272), as he actually shot better from three-point range (45.3percent) than from inside the arc (44.9percent) this season. He couldn't make anything to start the game, going 0-for-9 from the floor, but heated up after that dry spell by finishing 7-of-11 FG including a game-tying three-pointer right before Andre Miller's heroics. Curry finished with 19 points, nine assists, four rebounds, five turnovers and a +8 rating. SG Klay Thompson had a huge finish to the regular season with three straight 20-point efforts, averaging 24.0 PPG on 48percent shooting over that span. He kept that streak going in Game 1 with a team-high 22 points (10-for-19 FG). PG Jarrett Jack shot just 42percent FG in the regular-season series with the Nuggets, and was also cold on Saturday, making just 3-of-12 shots (0-for-5 threes). But he still contributed a near triple-double with 10 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds in 33 minutes off the bench.

The Nuggets led the NBA in scoring with 106.1 PPG, as they attempted the second-most field goals in the league (85.2 FGA per game). But they also shot a stellar 47.8percent FG (5th in NBA), despite a subpar 34.3percent clip on three-pointers (25th in league) during the regular season. Denver failed to reach any of these marks in Game 1 though, scoring 97 points on 44.7percent FG and 3-of-16 threes, while missing 10 free throws. Miller was the only Nuggets player with more than a dozen points, getting his playoff-career-high 28 points on 11-of-16 FG with five assists and just two turnovers. Miller had been in a major shooting slump over the final four games of the regular season, scoring just 6.3 PPG on 6-of-30 shooting. PG Ty Lawson didn't play very well in the playoff series opener with 12 points and four assists, well below his 16.7 PPG and 6.9 APG during the regular season. But two other starters also played very well in SF Wilson Chandler and SG Andre Iguodala. Chandler shot just 5-of-16 from the floor, but still finished with a double-double of 11 points and 13 rebounds. He has really stepped up his offense with SF Danilo Gallinari (torn ACL) sidelined, pouring in 20.0 PPG on 51percent FG (43percent threes) with 6.0 RPG in the final five regular-season games. Iguodala took just four shots, but wound up with eight points, 10 rebounds, five assists, three steals and a game-high +11 rating. This performance wasn't a big surprise considering he had a huge series versus Golden State in the regular season with 20.0 PPG, 6.3 RPG and 5.0 APG in the four meetings. PF Kenneth Faried hasn't played a full game since April 12 when he recorded a double-double (11 pts, 10 reb) in Dallas. The team thinks his ankle is healed enough for Tuesday, as Faried was a beast in the paint with 11.5 PPG, 11.3 RPG and 2.3 BPG against the Warriors this season.




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