Lakers-Nuggets Game 4 betting preview: Denver's found its spark
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The Denver Nuggets got on the board in Game 3 of the Western Conference finals, cutting their series deficit to 2-1. Can the Nuggets tie things up, or will they fall into yet another 3-1 hole?

Here's the betting primer for Thursday's Game 4.

Denver Nuggets vs. Los Angeles Lakers (-6, 214.5)

The Nuggets are getting some respect here. After closing at +7, +7.5, and +6.5 for the first three games, respectively, Denver opened as just a six-point 'dog for Game 4.

The total jumped from 210.5 to 215 from Game 1 to Game 2, so there's no real adjustment with the number at 214.5 now.

The case for the Nuggets

Depth might be less important in the playoffs when star players eat up more minutes. But in Game 3, Denver received the spark it needed from its supporting cast.

The usual suspects of Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray typically do most of the team's damage offensively. However, Jerami Grant provided the biggest boost of the night for the Nuggets, scoring 26 points and guarding LeBron James on the other end. Not to be outdone, Monte Morris poured in 14 off the bench in just shy of 20 minutes.

Denver loves the one day on, one day off playoff schedule, and the team has covered in each of its last five games playing on one day of rest.

The case for the Lakers

If there was a positive during their loss, it was the Lakers finding a way to score on the break. After being held to just five transition points in a narrow Game 2 win, Los Angeles - which ranked second in the league in regular-season fast-break points - posted 21 in Game 3.

While Denver's scoring was more dispersed Tuesday, the same can't be said about the Lakers' production. James and Anthony Davis combined for 57 points, with no other Laker recording more than 12.

The Lakers have also been great when playing on one day of rest, going 7-2 against the spread over their last nine. Additionally, Los Angeles is 5-2 ATS over its last seven contests as a playoff favorite.

Notable betting trends

  • The Nuggets are 5-1 ATS over their last six as playoff underdogs
  • The Nuggets are 6-2-1 ATS over their last nine after an ATS win
  • The Nuggets are 8-1-1 ATS over their last 10 after allowing 100-plus points
  • The Nuggets are 7-2-2 to the under during their last 11 games overall
  • The Nuggets are 6-2-2 to the under during their last 10 as playoff underdogs
  • The Lakers are 2-7 ATS following an ATS loss
  • The Lakers are 2-5 ATS over their last seven conference finals games
  • The Lakers are 6-1 to the under over their last seven Thursday games
  • The Lakers are 8-3 to the over their last 11 games after an outright loss

(Odds source: theScore Bet)

Alex Kolodziej is a betting writer for theScore. He's a graduate of Eastern Illinois who has been involved in the sports betting industry for 12 years. He can quote every line from "Rounders" and appreciates franchises that regularly wear alternate jerseys. Find him on Twitter @AJKolodziej.

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Lakers-Nuggets Game 4 betting preview: Denver's found its spark
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