Free Pick Breakdown, Odds & Prediction: Nuggets vs. Cavaliers (2/23/2023) - Taking Vegas



Free Pick Breakdown, Odds & Prediction: Nuggets vs. Cavaliers (2/23/2023)

By TakingVegas Staff Writer
February 22, 2023
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Denver Nuggets vs. Cleveland Cavaliers Preview and Prediction (2/23/23)

Line: Cavaliers -2.5, Nuggets +2.5
Total: 221.5

Denver Nuggets vs. Cleveland Cavaliers Betting Odds Breakdown

The Denver Nuggets will be making a trip to Cleveland after the all star break to take on the Cavaliers.

Cleveland is coming into this game as the favorite at -2.5, and the over/under is sitting at 221.5 points.

Denver Nuggets Preview

Denver is coming out of the all star break at 41-18, which has them sitting at the top of the western conference.

The Nuggets got a nine point win over the Mavericks in their last game, and they played pretty well in that game. The biggest story for them in that game was how well they shot the ball, with them shooting the ball at about 57 percent. They were also sharing the ball really well, with them piling up 34 assists throughout the course of the game. Nikola Jokic led the team with 10 assists against the Mavericks, and it wouldn’t be surprising if he continues to pass the ball more against the Cavaliers.

Cleveland is not going to make this game easy for Nikola Jokic. Jokic usually does most of his offensive work on the inside of the paint, but in this game, Cleveland will probably be sending both Jarrett Allen and Evan Mobley at him to try and slow him down. Assuming that the Cavaliers end up doing this, it wouldn’t be surprising if Nikola’s passing numbers are a little inflated in this game due to the defensive pressure. Either way, Nikola is a dangerous player for anyone to guard, and it’s very difficult for any team to slow him down.

Cleveland Cavaliers Preview

Cleveland is sitting at 38-23 in the eastern conference after the all star break, and that has them sitting at fourth place in the eastern conference.

Cleveland took a loss to the Philadelphia 76ers in their last game before the all star break, and it ended up being a pretty difficult game for them. Cleveland’s biggest problem in that game was that they got off to an incredibly slow start that was very difficult to recover from. At one point in the first quarter against Philadelphia, the Cavaliers were down by 21 points. The lead got all the way up to 28, and they even tried to make a late push to steal the game from the 76ers, but they fell just short and they lost by the score of 118-112. Assuming Cleveland doesn’t have another slow start like they did against the 76ers, this is a game that they could win.

The Nuggets feel like a much better matchup for the Cavaliers than what the 76ers were. That could mainly be because the Nuggets aren’t as physical as Philadelphia is. Although the Cavaliers are second in the whole league for defensive efficiency, it’s still so difficult for any team to slow down Joel Embiid just because of how big and physical he is in the paint. On top of that, it didn’t help them that the 76ers were making several three pointers throughout the game, with them shooting about 48 percent from beyond the arc. This won’t be an easy game regardless, but this should end up being an easier matchup for them at home.

Winner Prediction: Cleveland Cavaliers -2.5

Going into this game, it feels like the Cavaliers should have a very good chance at getting a win over Denver.

When healthy, this is a pretty good matchup for them, and it’s very possible that they get a win over Denver at home.