Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 9:44 AM

Nuggets vs. Trail Blazers Predictions, Odds, Preview

May 29, 2021
by Michael Crosson
NBA Expert

Western Conference postseason action will resume on Saturday afternoon with Nuggets-Blazers Game 4 set to wrap up TNT’s nationally televised double-header before the action moves over to ESPN for the late-slate of matchups.

So, VI is getting you ready with a variety of betting resources to help handicap all the evening’s top contests.

Nuggets vs. Trail Blazers Betting Resources

Betting Odds - Nuggets vs. Trail Blazers

Line Movements

Subject to Change

  • Spread: Trail Blazers -4
  • Money-Line: Portland -175, Denver +155
  • Total: 227.5

After following up a victory in the series opener with consecutive losses, the Blazers have stooped back down to a four-point underdog against the visiting Nuggets – marking the heftiest margin Denver has been favored by in this series.

The over-under for this event is still currently stationed at OU 227, which sits in the same ballpark as the first three totals rolled out by the oddsmakers for this series – despite all those events carrying lofty ‘over’ results by containing an average of 234.5 points scored in them.

Austin Rivers is coming off a huge performance in Denver's Game 3 win at Portland. (AP)

Nuggets vs. Trail Blazers Current Form

After riding out a bumpy 4-4 stretch to wrap up the regular season, Denver finished one loss short of taking a tumble down to fourth place in the standings before postseason brackets locked – potentially landing Nikola Jokic and company in a first-round matchup against the red-hot Mavericks.

Instead, the fourth-place Clippers struggled similarly with the Nuggets down the homestretch – earning Denver the third seed by default and a shot at its division-rival from the Northwest in the first round.

On the other hand, the Trail Blazers barreled into the playoffs following wins in six-of-seven matchups to close out the regular season – carrying that momentum into the first-round by mounting a double-digit victory over Denver back in the series opener between these teams.

The Nuggets responded with back-to-back wins in the following two contests by an average margin of 12 points though – which has brought us to where we are ahead of the fourth matchup in this series.

Nuggets vs. Trail Blazers Head-to-Head

  • May 27, 2021 - Nuggets 120 at Trail Blazers 115, Denver +3.5, Over 227
  • May 24, 2021 - Nuggets 128 vs. Trail Blazers 109, Denver -2, Over 225
  • May 22, 2021 - Trail Blazers 123 at Nuggets 109, Portland +1, Over 226
  • May 16, 2021 - Trail Blazers 132 vs. Nuggets 116, Portland -8.5, Over 229
  • Apr. 21, 2021 - Nuggets 106 at Trail Blazers 105, Portland +1.5, Under 230
  • Feb. 23, 2021 - Nuggets 111 vs. Trail Blazers 106, Portland +6, Under 232

The Nuggets claimed victories in two of- hree regular-season matchups against Portland – with both of Denver’s wins comfortably carrying ‘under’ results at an average of 214 points per game, and the Blazers’ lone win cashing ‘over’ tickets thanks to Damian Lillard and company’s 132-point offensive effort in the contest.

Denver and Portland kicked off their postseason journeys with an exciting back-and-forth affair during the first matchup of this series – as opposing superstars, Jokic and Lillard, dueled with 34 points apiece in the contest.

The Blazers’ supporting cast consistently came to the rescue in the form of Carmelo Anthony and Jusuf Nurkic over the course of that event though, as the duo teamed up to match Dame’s 34 points at a combined clip of 59% in the contest – clearly making a huge impact on the way to Portland’s double-digit upset-victory in Game 1.

The Nuggets immediately clapped back with a dominant victory of their own in Game 2 though, as Lillard received very little assistance to go along with his 42-point effort in the contest – highlighted by C.J. McCollum and Norman Powell being the only other members of the Blazers to crack double-digit scoring in the event.

Most recently, Game 3 between Portland and Denver took place this past Tuesday night and resulted in a second straight victory for the Nuggets – as the Blazers trailed by nine at the end of the first quarter, and then proceeded to coast to a five-point loss without ever regaining the lead.

(SU-Straight Up, ATS - Against the Spread, OU - Over-Under)

Denver Nuggets Betting Outlook

Inside the Stats (2020-2021)

  • Overall: 49-26 SU, 36-39 ATS, 42-33 OU
  • Road: 21-16 SU, 19-18 ATS, 18-19 OU

Despite the devastating knee injury Jamal Murray suffered back in mid-April, Denver kept the blinders on and plowed through the Western Conference standings during the second half of the regular season – claiming the third seed with a record of 47-25, which has slated them for a favorable first-round matchup against Portland.

The Nuggets were rudely awakened in their postseason opener against Portland though, as the Trail Blazers went off for 123 points behind an impressive 19-of-40 long-range effort in the event – resulting in a rare double-digit victory for an underdog in Ball Arena.

Betting the ‘over’ in Nuggets’ games was a profitable trend to follow during the regular season, with the total finishing up at a 39-33 mark in matchups containing Denver – which ranked third across the conference in that department.

That high-scoring trend appears to be carrying momentum into the playoffs too – highlighted by the total going over in four-of-six games to close out Denver’s regular-season campaign, and three straight to kick off this series against Portland.

Portland Trail Blazers Betting Outlook

Inside the Stats (2020-2021)

  • Overall: 43-32 SU, 39-36 ATS, 41-34 OU
  • Home: 25-12 SU, 15-22 ATS, 18-19 OU

After getting bounced from last year’s postseason in a quick five games to kick off L. A.’s dominant title run, the Blazers sprung onto the scene in the first round of this year’s playoffs by claiming a statement-win in their series opener against Denver last week.

The tables have already been turned on the Blazers ahead of their fourth matchup though, considering Denver’s victories in Games 2 and 3 have left Portland in an uncomfortable position in this event – currently staring down the barrel of a two-game deficit against this year’s presumptive MVP winner if they end up dropping Saturday’s affair.

The Blazers leaned towards the high-scoring side of the spectrum during this year’s regular season – with the total finishing up at 38-34 clip in matchups containing Portland, which ranked fourth across the conference in that department.

That trend has gained steam by frequently matching up against Denver as of late too – considering the total has now gone 'over' in four straight meetings between the Blazers and Nuggets, which includes their 132-116 affair that took place on the final calendar day of the regular season.

Key Injuries

Denver Nuggets

  • SG Jamal Murray: Knee - Out
  • SG P.J. Dozier: Groin - Out
  • SG Will Barton: Hamstring - Out

Portland Trail Blazers

  • PF Zack Collins: Ankle - Out

Nuggets vs. Trail Blazers Player Prop Best Bet

Damian Lillard – To Score 35+ Points (+112)

After averaging over 32 points across his final eight regular-season outings, Lillard has kept his scoring streak alive during Portland’s opening-round playoff series against the Nuggets.

Lillard is currently boasting an average of 37.6 points per game across his first three postseason outings, while tallying at least 34 in all three of those events.

I’ll back Dame to have another big night on offense here, as the Blazers desperately need their superstar to keep scoring in massive quantities if they want to hold onto their punchers’ chance at knocking off the Nuggets in an extended series.

Nuggets vs. Trail Blazers Prediction

After following up a victory in their postseason opener with consecutive losses, the Blazers enter Game 4 staring down the barrel of a potential two-game deficit against the third-seeded Nuggets – which is a situation that I expect to see Portland desperately trying to avoid, especially with only one home game remaining for them in this series after Saturday.

I’ll lay the points with the Blazers at home here, as I expect Portland to put its absolute best foot forward in this event and treat it like a “must-win” – which should keep the score dangerously close, at a minimum.

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