The Denver Nuggets are massive favorites in Game 1 of the NBA Finals against the Miami Heat, as this is one of the more lopsided Finals matchups we’ve seen in terms of seeding.
Miami is just the second No. 8 seed to make the NBA Finals, but the team has upset the two title favorites, the Milwaukee Bucks and Boston Celtics, to get here.
One key has been Miami’s ability to win Game 1s, going 3-0, but the team has a trend working against it in this series. In the NBA playoffs, teams that are fresh off of a Game 7 are just 33-53 straight up in Game 1 of the following series.
While that’s good news for Nuggets fans, it doesn’t quite tell us if they’ll cover the spread for this game.
Heat vs. Nuggets odds, spread and total for NBA Finals Game 1
Denver is favored by 8.5 points, which is a major number to lay in an NBA Finals game, but there is a trend that supports Denver in this spot.
NBA ATS trend says bet Nuggets over Heat in Game 1 of NBA Finals
Since 2005, there have been 27 instances where a team had eight or more days rest between games. Denver, in this spot, has 10. Those teams are an impressive 18-9 against the spread in Game 1 of those respective series.
That’s a great sign for Denver, who has been elite at home at Ball Arena all season.
The Nuggets went 34-7 at home in the regular season and are 8-0 in the playoffs. Overall, they are 26-18-1 against the spread as home favorites, winning those games by an average margin of 10.1 points per game.
So, if you’re thinking of betting on Denver in this game, don’t let the point spread scare you away from trusting this squad.
Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.