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|Team||Point Spread||Total||Money Line|
|Milwaukee Bucks||-3.5 -112||TBA||-157|
|Denver Nuggets||+3.5 -109||TBA||+128|
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The Denver Nuggets’ defence has taken a dive this season, much to the delight of the run-and-gun Milwaukee Bucks. While the Nuggets have an intimidating offence of their own, it’s unlikely they can pull out a win without stopping the Bucks’ inside-out attack.
Milwaukee Bucks to Win (-157)
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|Bucks vs Nuggets Information|
|What||Milwaukee Bucks vs Denver Nuggets|
|Where||Ball Arena, Denver, CO|
|When||9:30 PM EST, February 8th, 2021|
|How to Watch||NBATV|
|Milwaukee Bucks||Head-to-Head||Denver Nuggets|
|Mike Budenholzer||Head Coach||Mike Malone|
|15-8 (2nd in East)||Standing||12-10 (6th in West)|
|118.9 (1st of 30)||Off Rtg||116.1 (5th of 30)|
|109.2 (8th of 30)||Def Rtg||112.8 (22nd of 30)|
|101.9 (5th of 30)||Pace||97.1 (29th of 30)|
Leaders (Per Game)
|G. Antetokounmpo (27.1)||PPG||N. Jokic (27.2)|
|G. Antetokounmpo (11.2)||RPG||N. Jokic (11.5)|
|G. Antetokounmpo, K. Middleton (5.8)||APG||N. Jokic (8.6)|
|J. Holiday (1.9)||SPG||N. Jokic (1.7)|
|B. Lopez (1.5)||BPG||M. Porter (1.0)|
|T. Antetokounmpo (.654)/G. Antetokounmpo (10.0)||FG%/FGM||N. Jokic (.569)/N. Jokic (10.5)|
|B. Portis (.479)/K. Middleton (2.6)||3P%/3PM||J. Green (.468)/M. Porter (2.3)|
Not only are the Milwaukee Bucks incredibly efficient, but they are versatile all over the court. While the Denver Nuggets struggle defensively, the Bucks are yet to be held down by many NBA defences.
The Bucks are incredibly efficient, ranking second overall in field-goal percentage and third overall in three-point shooting percentage. Considering the Nuggets are in the bottom third in field-goal percentage allowed, the Bucks are encouraged to attack the paint.
Succeeding in the paint will open up the Bucks shooters, especially as help comes to cover their lack of shot-blocking.
The Denver Nuggets are no longer the team that reached the Western Conference Finals last season. They lost key pieces in Torrey Craig, Mason Plumlee, and Jerami Grant. Most notably, Denver’s defence has taken a dive since their roster overhaul.
New rotational players like Michael Porter Jr, Jamychal Green, and PJ Dozier haven’t made up the defensive difference that their formers took up. As such, Denver’s performance has suffered this season.
Good at closing out on their opponents but bad at recovering, Denver must limit Milwaukee somewhere if they hope to engage their competitive offence. It won’t be enough for Denver to get in a scoring battle with Milwaukee.
Bucks guard Bryn Forbes came into Milwaukee from the San Antonio Spurs with one goal in mind – hit open three-point shots.
While Forbes’ overall output is down, his efficiency is at a career-best. Forbes is hitting 47.8% of his three-point shots, despite playing his fewest minutes per game since his rookie season.
Against a swarming Nuggets defence, the Bucks are going to see a lot of hard closeouts. How players like Forbes handle the closeouts and move the ball will determine the Bucks’ success.
A true star in the NBA, Nikola Jokic is one of the true all-around threats in the league. While his performances have been spectacular, the Nuggets have struggled despite his play.
Jokic is coming off of a 50 points, 12 assist, and eight rebound performance against the Sacramento Kings. Despite his efforts, the Nuggets’ lack defensive standards lost them the game.
Jokic can only do so much for his teammates, and a 50 points performance isn’t realistic every night. Continuing his scoring efforts while creating opportunities for his teammates will be necessary for the Nuggets to steal a win though.
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Christian Jope is a writer, social media strategist, and data analyst. A Queen’s University Alumni, Christian is an author and social media strategist with Raptors Cage, while also working closely with MLSE and Canada Basketball through community-driven events.
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