Nuggets vs. Lakers NBA expert prediction and odds for Game 3 of Western Conference playoffs

Apr 20, 2024; Denver, Colorado, USA; Denver Nuggets guard Jamal Murray (27) reacts to dunking the
Apr 20, 2024; Denver, Colorado, USA; Denver Nuggets guard Jamal Murray (27) reacts to dunking the / Andrew Wevers-USA TODAY Sports

The Nuggets rallied to find another way to beat the Lakers, a 10th straight win for the defending champs. 

Now, the series flips to Los Angeles for what is a must win scenario for the Lakers to keep up with the Lakers. While the series has been competitive, the Nuggets seem to have counters that the Lakers don’t and this series is lined as a coin flip despite the change in location. 

Can the Nuggets take a commanding 3-0 series lead? Let’s break it down by first checking out the odds: 

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Nuggets vs. Lakers odds, spread and total

Nuggets vs. Lakers how to watch

  • Date: Thursday, April 25th
  • Game Time: 10:00 PM EST
  • Venue: Arena
  • How to Watch (TV): TNT

Nuggets vs. Lakers Injury Reports

Nuggets injury Report


Lakers injury Report

  • Anthony Davis - back - probable
  • LeBron James - ankle - probable
  • Jared Vanderbilt - foot - OUT
  • Christian Wood - knee - OUT
  • Cam Reddish - ankle - OUT

Nuggets key players to watch

Jamal Murray: Murray had a bad first three quarters, but got going late and finished the Lakers off with a game winning jumper. He’ll look for a more complete game on Thursday night after making only nine shots of 24 attempts, but he has had a ton of success against the Lakers in the postseason, scoring 27 points with six assists and five rebounds. 

Anthony Davis: Davis has been outstanding for most of this series, averaging 32 points and more than 12 rebounds per game on nearly 62% shooting. However, he has slowed over the course of the game. Can he put together a full effort and snap a 10 game losing streak to the Lakers?

Nuggets vs. Lakers prediction and pick 

The Lakers have thrown its best punch at the Nuggets, and the defending champions have absorbed it and thrown back. 

D’Angelo Russell made one less three pointer than the Nuggets whole team and the team was spotted 20 points through more than a half of basketball, and still couldn’t beat the Nuggets. 

The Lakers don’t have the depth or the versatility to put together a full 48 minutes against Denver, who has been an elite fourth quarter team all season and flexing its muscles late. 

The Nuggets were third in net rating (+4.8) in the fourth quarter this season while the Lakers were about neutral that was 11th in net rating (+1.2), but that number has grown in the postseason as Denver continues to find answers around Nikola Jokic late. 

The Nuggets have posted the fourth best net rating in the postseason at +7.5 as the Lakers have gassed out late in games. 

The 39-year-old LeBron James hasn’t been able to keep the Lakers afloat in the fourth quarter and the Nuggets have shown it can win while shooting poorly (23% from three-point range in Game 2). 

Denver makes it an 11th straight win at the expense of the Lakers. I’ll take them on the road. 

Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.