The NBA is in the thick of their first round matchups. Two games will be up on the board throughout Tuesday. One of these games will be between the Utah Jazz and the Denver Nuggets. They will meet in Game 5 of their series as Utah looks to close out the Nuggets. This game will tip off at around 6:30 PM Eastern time on TNT.
The Jazz earned a record of 44-28 throughout the regular season, which has them in sixth place of the Western Conference. Utah finished with a record of 3-5 throughout their seeding games. The Jazz have done well throughout this series, jumping out to a strong 3-1 series lead. Now Utah will look to knock off the Nuggets with a win on Tuesday night.
Denver finished out the regular season with a record of 46-27, which had them finish out in third place of the Western Conference. The Nuggets had also gone 3-5 throughout their seeding games as well. Denver earned a solid seed and will look to stay alive with a big win in this matchup. I expect the Nuggets to come out quick to avoid another early exit.
These two teams have done well throughout this series, but it has been the Jazz who have jumped out to a strong series lead. Denver won when these two teams met up in the seeding games in double overtime. The Nuggets will look to find a way to get past Utah in this one as they look to avoid a tough elimination.
Game 1 of this series was on August 17. Donovan Mitchell had a huge performance dropping 57 points, but it was not enough. Jamal Murray finished with 36 points, while Nikola Jokic put up 29 points and 10 rebounds. Jerami Grant put up another 19 points off the bench, as the Nuggets took Game 1 135-125 in overtime.
Game 2 was on August 19. Michael Porter Jr. finished with 28 points, while Nikola Jokic had 28 points and 11 rebounds for the Nuggets. Donovan Mitchell posted 30 points and 8 assists. Jordan Clarkson had another 26 points off the bench, while Rudy Gobert and Joe Ingles both had over 15 points. The Jazz were able to bounce back with a 124-105 win to tie up the series.
These two teams met up for Game 3 on August 21. Utah’s defense stumped the Nuggets, holding Nikola Jokic to 15 points and Jamal Murray to 12 points. Mike Conley had 27 points, while Rudy Gobert finished with 24 points and 14 rebounds. Donovan Mitchell earned 20 points in this one to help give the Jazz a 124-87 win to take a 2-1 series lead.
The most recent game of this series was Game 4 on August 23. Jamal Murray finished with 50 points, 11 rebounds and 7 assists for the Nuggets. Nikola Jokic earned 29 points, but it was not enough. Donovan Mitchell finished with 51 points for Utah. Mike Conley had 26 points, while Jordan Clarkson finished with 24 points off the bench. The Jazz won 129-127 to take a stranglehold on this series.
Field Goal Percentage
The Jazz had a strong field goal percentage in the regular season. Utah capitalized on 47.1 percent of their shots from the field, which was sixth best in the NBA. In the playoffs, the Jazz have been dangerous, knocking down 51.6 percent of their shots from the field, which is best in the league. Utah also has the best three point percentage, making 43.3 percent of their shots from deep.
Denver put up a really strong shooting percentage throughout the regular season. The Nuggets made 47.3 percent of their shots from the field this season. Denver has made 46.2 percent of their shots from the field in the playoffs, which has not been enough. The Nuggets have also drained 42.7 percent of their shots from deep, which is fourth best in the NBA.
The Nuggets had a solid defense throughout the regular season, but have struggled to slow down Utah. The Jazz have been led by Donovan Mitchell, who has just been playing on another level. Denver will look to clog up the lanes in Game 5 to slow down the Jazz’s scorching offense. If Utah’s offense takes over again though, it could be over for the Nuggets.
Since the playoffs started, Donovan Mitchell has been averaging 39.5 points and 6 assists per game. Mike Conley has averaged 26.5 points per game in his two starts. Jordan Clarkson is averaging 20 points per game off the bench, while Rudy Gobert has averaged 19.5 points and 10 rebounds per game. Joes Ingles rounds out the lineup, averaging 10 points per game.
Jamal Murray has been the best player in the playoffs for the Nuggets. Murray is averaging 28 points and 6.5 assists per game. Nikola Jokic has averaged 25.5 points and 8.5 rebounds per game. Michael Porter Jr. is averaging 14.5 points per game, while Jerami Grant has averaged around 11.5 points per game.
These two teams have had dominant performances from their stars, but the Jazz have had some extra support. Denver needs some players to step up with Murry and Jokic to keep this series alive. Mitchell has opened up so many possibilities for the Jazz, while Conley has been on fire since returning to the bubble for Game 3.
Utah has a strong 3-1 series lead over the Nuggets in this one, but I believe that Denver will give a push in Game 5 to stay alive. Denver had a strong team this season, which put them in third place of the Western Conference. The Nuggets kept Game 4 of this series close and I expect them to come out fast to stay alive in Game 5. If Denver can slow down the Jazz’s offense, they should be able to force a Game 6.
BetOnline has Utah listed as a -150 against the money line in this one. This implies that the Jazz will win this game around 60 percent of the time. The Jazz have earned this line with their play in this series, but I believe that the Nuggets will stay alive in this one. Denver came so close in Game 4 and I expect them to make a good push in this one.