Lakers vs. Nuggets Game 3 Betting Preview, Odds, How To Watch

Alex Murray
By: Alex Murray
24 Apr 24
NBA
News - NBA
Lakers vs. Nuggets Game 3 Betting Preview, Odds, How To Watch

After going down 2-0 on Jamal Murray’s game-winning buzzer beater in Game 2, the Los Angeles Lakers have not beaten the Denver Nuggets since December 2022, a span of 10 games that includes six playoff defeats. The reigning champs are definitely in the Lakers’ collective heads, but something’s got to give at some point, right? Could Game 3 in L.A. on Thursday be that point? 

Highlights

  • Lakers must continue to rely on Anthony Davis to get a Game 3 upset
  • Denver has struggled as a road favorite so far this season
  • Christian Braun will continue to contribute energy and points for Denver

Los Angeles Lakers vs. Denver Nuggets NBA 1st Round Game 3 Betting Odds

All odds provided by Sports Interaction.

TeamMoneylinePoint SpreadTotal
Los Angeles Lakers-105+1.5 (-120)O215.5 (-115)
Denver Nuggets-115-1.5 (+100)U215.5 (-105)

When to Watch and How to Watch Lakers vs. Nuggets Game 3

This first round Western Conference series between the No. 2 Denver Nuggets and No. 7 Los Angeles Lakers will pick back up for Game 3 at crypto.com Arena in L.A. on Thursday, April 25 at 10:00pm E.T. Canadian NBA fans can watch the proceedings on TSN3 and TSN5, while streamers can use the TSN app to watch the action. American viewers can watch the matchup on TNT.

Lakers vs. Nuggets Game 3 Point Spread Betting Preview

It’s not like the defending champs have been beating the breaks off of the challengers in this series: the Lakers have held double-digit leads in both Game 1 and Game 2. Clearly, there is something the Lakers can do that gives Nikola Jokic and the gang issues, they just need to pinpoint that and go all in on it.

One thing that would help is refraining from doubling Jokic like they did in the second half of Game 2, which allowed the greatest seven-foot passer ever to set up his supporting cast for easy looks, which kept those auxiliary players locked in and ready to contribute. Anthony Davis needs to strap up better in the post against Jokic, which, we know, is easier said than done, but is necessary if the Lakers want to play the Big Cevapi honestly.

Jokic clearly can’t stop Anthony Davis, so the Lakers need to continue feeding him throughout the game rather than completely avoiding him in the fourth quarter like they did in Game 2, when he had just one fourth-quarter shot attempt. The major question here is when Austin Reaves and Rui Hachimura are going to start contributing, as they are both shooting below 30 percent from deep after seasons where they shot 37 and 42 percent, respectively, from deep.

The Lakers can also help their chances by limiting turnovers, as they’ve averaged 13 a game through the first two contests. If Darvin Ham plays Jokic honest, AD gets fed for four quarters, they take care of the ball, and Reaves and Hachimura shoot closer to their averages, the Lakers should be able to get the upset here at -105 odds. Here are a few more NBA betting trends that pushed us to this conclusion:

  • Lakers are 20-19 ATS as the underdog this year
  • L.A. has covered the spread in three of their last four games
  • Denver is 13-18-1 ATS as a road favorite this year, 23rd in the NBA
  • L.A. is 21-15 ATS after a loss, the 9th-best such mark in the league
  • Nuggets are 23-30-1 ATS against the West this year

Best Lakers vs. Nuggets Game 3 Player Props

PlayerPoints O/U
Nikola Jokic (DEN)27.5 (-125/-105)
LeBron James (LAL)25.5 (-118/-111)
Anthony Davis (LAL)25.5 (-110/-125)
Jamal Murray (DEN)23.5 (-118/-111)
DeAngelo Russell (LAL)17.5 (-105/-125)
Michael Porter Jr. (DEN)17.5 (-111/-118)
Aaron Gordon (DEN)13.5 (-125/-105)
Austin Reaves (LAL)13.5 (-110/-120)
Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (DEN)9.5 (-125/-110)
Christian Braun (DEN)5.5 (-110/-120)

As we mentioned earlier, Anthony Davis is the catalyst for Lakers success in Game 3, and LeBron James, Darvin Ham, and the rest of the coaching staff and roster know that.

He has played the Nuggets five times this season, and he’s put up 32 points in three of those. He also averages 26.6 points per game against Jokic all-time, including 26.8 in last year’s playoff series. He will be getting fed early and often, and the only way we see him falling short of his 25.5 number is if he gets in early foul trouble or, god forbid, he picks up a knock.

Another one that jumps out to us is Christian Braun’s curiously low point total. The Denver spark plug has actually been playing a little bit less in the playoffs, averaging 15.5 minutes, but he’s also averaging 6.5 shots per game. Braun has taken 5+ shots in 12 of his last 14 games, and he’s put in 6+ points in 10 of those dozen. The odds on the over should be a lot shorter than -110, but we’re not complaining to any sports betting sites about it.

Alex is a recent graduate of Ryerson's Sport Media program in 2019 and has been contributing to BettingTop10 since 2020. He has worked in the field of sports and sports betting for several years, including writing for theScore and daily fantasy sports website FantasyPros as one of their lead NBA news writers. A dedicated sports fan and experienced sports bettor, Alex has the knowledge to provide you with the best betting advice and the sneakiest props no matter what the sport may be.