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NBA Starting Lineups and Match Prediction - Denver Nuggets vs San Antonio Spurs - Game 4

Shubham Pant
ANALYST
Preview
217   //    20 Apr 2019, 17:13 IST

San Antonio Spurs have been playing some real solid basketball
San Antonio Spurs have been playing some real solid basketball

Match Details:

San Antonio Spurs (48-34) vs Denver Nuggets (54-28)

3:00am IST, 21st April 2019

AT&T Center, San Antonio, Texas

Head to Head (Playoffs):

Games played: 29 matches

Won by Denver Nuggets: 7 matches

Won by San Antonio Spurs: 22 matches

Match Overview:

The Denver Nuggets play Game 4 of their playoff series in another away game at the AT&T Center in Texas against the surging San Antonio Spurs. The series currently is in the favour of the Spurs, who lead the Nuggets 2-1.

The San Antonio Spurs had a topsy-turvy regular season but ended the season on a really good run of form, which landed them in the 7th spot in the Western Conference and with a solid 48-34 record.

The Denver Nuggets, on the other hand, were always a really solid team and pushed the Golden State Warriors right till the end of the regular season, but had to settle for the 2nd seed with a superb 54-28 record to make the playoffs as one of the teams with home court advantage.

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Injuries:

San Antonio Spurs: Guard Dejounte Murray is out for the season with a knee injury.

Denver Nuggets: Michael Porter Jr. is out indefinitely with a back injury.

Players to watch out for:

Nikola Jokic (Denver Nuggets):

Denver Nuggets need another masterclass from Jokic
Denver Nuggets need another masterclass from Jokic

Nikola Jokic has had the best season of his young career this season, with the big man leading the Denver Nuggets from the front. His superb all-round display and consistency throughout the regular season led the Nuggets to the 2nd seed in a really tough Western Conference.

Jokic has put up some great numbers this season, averaging 20.1 points, 10.8 rebounds, 7.3 assists and 1.4 steals per game. Such a high assists number is probably unseen for a center in the modern NBA.

In this series, Jokic has been running the show for the Nuggets, averaging 17.7 points, 11.7 rebounds and 9.7 assists in 35.7 minutes. If the Spurs want to stop the Nuggets altogether, they need to find a way to shut down Jokic.

LaMarcus Aldridge (San Antonio Spurs):

The San Antonio Spurs traded Kawhi Leonard in the summer for DeMar DeRozan and Jakob Poeltl but that did not diminish the role LaMarcus Aldridge has been playing in this Spurs team.

He has been exceptional throughout the regular season, averaging 21.3 points, along with 9.3 rebounds and 2.4 assists. He has been a superb rim protector all season long, averaging 1.3 blocks per game as well. 

In the playoff series, Aldridge's consistent game has been the one to steady the San Antonio Spurs. He has averaged 19 points per game, along with 9 rebounds and 3 assists in 35 minutes of action. The Nuggets need to find a way to neutralize the big man if they want to come back and level the series.

Predicted Starting Lineups:

Denver Nuggets: Jamal Murray (G), Gary Harris (G), Will Barton (F), Paul Millsap (F), Nikola Jokic (C)

San Antonio Spurs: Derrick White (G), Bryn Forbes (G), DeMar DeRozan (G), LaMarcus Aldridge (F), Jakob Poeltl (C)

Predicted Match Result: The San Antonio Spurs will beat the Denver Nuggets

The Denver Nuggets have been the team to beat through the regular season, but their lack of playoff experience is starting to show. They are just being brought to a halt by the game of the Spurs, who is not letting them play freely.

The Spurs are almost unbeatable at home and with their role players like White in such solid form, the Nuggets need to pull a rabbit out of the hat to beat the Spurs in the 4th game of this amazing playoff series.

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