Trail Blazers vs Nuggets NBA Odds, Picks and Predictions May 22

Updated: May 21, 2021

CJ McCollum has been cooking for a Blazers squad that won 10 of its last 12 games heading into the playoffs and holds an odds edge in the series despite being a lower seed.

Photo By – USA TODAY Sports

The Denver Nuggets might have home-court advantage over the Portland Trail Blazers in the first round of the NBA Playoffs, but the Blazers are actually favorites to win the series. Game 1 will go a long way in determining the outcome of this one, so you’ll want to tune in when the two meet at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado at 10:30 p.m. ET on Saturday, May 22. 

Will Denver kick things off with a home victory? Find out in our Blazers vs. Nuggets picks and predictions. 

Trail Blazers vs Nuggets game info

Location: Ball Arena, Denver, CO
Date: Saturday, May 22, 2021
Time: 10:30 p.m. ET

Trail Blazers vs Nuggets odds

Odds via the Covers Line, an average comprised of odds from multiple sportsbooks.

Compare NBA odds before betting to ensure you get the best number.

The line opened at Portland -1.5, with the total at 227.5. Early action on Denver dipped the spread to Portland -1, while the total hasn’t budged. Check back later for a full report from Patrick!

Check out the full line movement for this game

Trail Blazers vs Nuggets series odds

Trail Blazers: -125
Nuggets: +105

Trail Blazers vs Nuggets betting preview


Trail Blazers: C Zach Collins (out)
Nuggets: G PJ Dozier (out), G Will Barton (out), G Jamal Murray (out)
Find our latest NBA injury reports.

Betting trend to know

The Blazers are 9-3 ATS in their last 12 games. Find more NBA betting trends for Trail Blazers vs. Nuggets.

Against the spread (ATS) pick

The Blazers won 10 of their final 12 regular-season games, so they are playing great basketball entering this matchup. With Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum in the backcourt, opponents have to have a lot of firepower in order to keep up with them, and it’s unclear whether or not the Nuggets have that right now. Jamal Murray’s season-ending injury was a huge blow to this Denver team, and it significantly lowers the group’s ceiling. The Nuggets looked like a sneaky title defender before Murray went down.

Nikola Jokic is going to put up stupid numbers in this series — and Michael Porter Jr. should have a couple of 20-point games — but it’s hard to imagine Denver mustering up enough offense to beat this Portland team in four out of seven games. And the Blazers have to like their chances of jumping out the gate with a win. 

Portland has covered in four straight games against Denver, and the team should be able to do it again in the series opener. Keep an eye on the battle between Jokic and Jusuf Nurkic, who has what it takes to hold his own in the paint against the likely regular-season MVP. Also, for as good a defender as Facundo Campazzo is, it just seems unlikely that he’ll find a way to slow down Lillard. Campazzo has given Denver a jolt defensively since stepping into a bigger role, but this isn’t a great matchup for him. 

PREDICTION: Blazers +1.0 (-110) 

Covers NBA betting analysis

Over/Under pick

The Blazers have been pretty close to unstoppable offensively as of late. Portland is second in the league in offensive rating at 117.1 points per 100 possessions, but that number has been 122.7 over the last 14 games. The Blazers have just taken things to another level on that end of the floor, and the Nuggets don’t have the personnel to stop them. 

Denver has also gone Over in five of its last six games, and three of the last five meetings between the Blazers and Nuggets have gone Over. Look for Denver to get a slight adrenaline boost from its home crowd in this game, but don’t expect the Nuggets to just stop this Blazers offense. As previously mentioned, Portland looks like the right pick in this game, but both teams are going to get it going offensively. 

PREDICTION: Over 228.0 (-108) 

Player prop pick

McCollum scored 24 points on 9-of-17 shooting against the Nuggets on May 16, so we know he’s been capable of hitting this number recently. He also happened to have 37 points in a road Game 7 against this very team in the 2019 Western Conference Semifinals. That was a long time ago, but it’s clear that the guard is comfortable scoring at an altitude against the Nuggets. And the pressure of the playoffs isn’t going to get to a guy that has been there before. 

On top of that, Denver doesn’t have many players that are comfortable defending off-ball scorers like McCollum. The Nuggets might find a way to make life on Lillard tough, but it’s unlikely they’ll put the clamps on the entire Portland backcourt. 

PREDICTION: CJ McCollum Over 22.5 Points (-110) 

Trail Blazers vs Nuggets betting card

  • Blazers +1.0 (-110) 
  • Over 228.0 (-110) 
  • CJ McCollum Over 22.5 Points (-110) 

Picks made on 5/21/2021 at 2:20 a.m. ET

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