Monday evening on the NBA Hardwood and the Northwest Division will square off with the Pacific Division as the Denver Nuggets grapple with the Sacramento Kings at Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, California. The Nuggets won all three games between these teams last year.The Nuggets Are Off To A Solid Start
The Denver Nuggets had one of the better records in the Western Conference last year and they picked up right where they left off. The Nuggets have begun their season at 2-0 with wins over Portland on the road and Phoenix at home. Both games were close as they beat the Trailblazers by eight and needed OT to know off the Suns by one. It would have been a bad loss for the Nuggets as they were favorites of -11.5 in the contest. THis is a talented team that plays very good as they come in ranked 9th in points allowed at 103.5 ppg and they have a shot at keeping it going against the worst offense in the league.
The offense for the Nuggets has been below average in the early going, but for them, that is OK as they rely on their defense to win games. Still, the Offense could have a good showing here against a Sacramento team that has allowed 119.7 ppg on the year. Denver shot just 39.1% from the field overall, including just 25.9% from long range in the 108-107 OT win over the Suns in their last game. The saving grace was that the Nuggets hit 80.6% (29/36) of their free-throw attempts. Jamaal Murray led the attack with 27 points while Nikola Jokic had a triple-double with 23 points, 14 boards and 12 assists.
Kings Still Looking For Their First WinThe Sacramento Kings improved by 12 wins last year from 2017 but they still ended up under .500 for the year and out of the playoffs for the 13th season in a row. This year has not started out well for them either as they enter this game having lost their last three games in a row. They were obliterated in their two losses on the road while losing by 10 to the Trail Blazers in their lone game at home. Sacramento has not been competitive in the early going and they have struggled at both ends of the court. Let's start with an offense that scored just 81 points in their last game which was a 32 point loss. Dewayne Dedmon led the attack with 11 points while 2nd was Bogdan Bogdanovic, who had 10.
The Kings are playing without Marvin Bagley III and they will be doing so until sometime in December. They could continue to struggle on offense until Bagley returns. The Kings have struggled on defense as well as they enter this game having allowed 119.7 ppg so far and that puts them at 23rd in the nation. Sacramento allowed the Jazz to hit 56.4% of their shots from the floor overall, including 48.6% from long range. They will need to get their defense going or this will be a long year for them, especially since they don't have enough offense to overcome a bad defense.
- 3-13 ATS in their last 16 vs. the Western Conference.
- 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games playing on 1 days rest
- 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a winning % below .400
- 7-2 ATS the last nine games in this series