Blazers vs. Nuggets NBA expert prediction and odds for Friday, Feb. 2 (Portland stays hot)

NBA betting preview, prediction and best bet for Blazers-Nuggets.

Jan 31, 2024; Portland, Oregon, USA; Portland Trail Blazers center Deandre Ayton (2) celebrates with Jerami Grant.
Jan 31, 2024; Portland, Oregon, USA; Portland Trail Blazers center Deandre Ayton (2) celebrates with Jerami Grant. / Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports
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Portland is currently the No. 14 seed in the Western Conference and well on pace to miss the playoffs for the third straight season in the Chauncey Billups era.

However, the Trail Blazers have shown life recently, winning three of five and coming off back-to-back outright victories as big underdogs against two of the top teams in the Eastern Conference (Philadelphia and Milwaukee). Portland is getting double-digit points again on Friday. Can they keep the momentum on the road? 

Denver was without Nikola Jokic in Wednesday’s 105-100 road loss to Oklahoma City and the Nuggets’ offense, as expected, suffered mightily. Without the NBA Finals MVP, the reigning champions shot just 39.8% from the field and were under 70% at the free-throw line. Jokic carries a questionable tag into Friday’s matchup in Denver. Can the Nuggets get margin without him? 

Here’s the betting preview for Friday night with a best bet. 

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Blazers vs. Nuggets odds, spread and total

Blazers vs. Nuggets how to watch

  • Date: Friday, Feb. 2
  • Game time: 9 p.m. EST
  • Venue: Ball Arena
  • How to watch (TV): Bally Sports
  • Blazers record: 15-33
  • Nuggets record: 33-16

Blazers vs. Nuggets injury reports

Portland Trailblazers injury report

  • No injuries to report

Denver Nuggets injury report

  • Peyton Watson (knee contusion): probable
  • Jamal Murray (knee contusion): probable
  • Julian Strawther (knee): questionable
  • Nikola Jokic (back): questionable 

Blazers vs. Nuggets key players to watch

Blazers

DeAndre Ayton: The 7-foot center and former No. 1 overall pick has been dominant since returning from injury Jan. 19 after missing nearly a month. In January, Ayton averaged 15.1 points and 9.6 rebounds per game. He has notched a double-double in four of the last five games and is coming off a 20-point, 11-rebound performance in Portland’s 119-116 upset of the Bucks. 

Nuggets

Aaron Gordon: With Jokic out, Gordon helped carry the offense with a bigger role. In 39 minutes, Gordon turned in his third double-double of the month with a team-high 16 points (7-of-16 shooting) and 13 rebounds. He was three assists from a triple-double and had 4 blocks. Gordon could have a bigger role with Jokic and Jamal Murray each dealing with injuries. 

Blazers vs. Nuggets prediction and pick

Portland has been rolling of late for backers, covering in seven of its last 10 games. The Trail Blazers have been underdogs in all 10 of those contests and are getting double-digit points Friday night. Portland has covered four of its last five games as an underdog of 10-plus points.

Can you trust Denver’s offense to get margin? For starters, the Nuggets could be missing Jokic for a second-straight game after struggling against the Thunder without him. Portland’s defense has gotten better in the paint, especially with Ayton returning from injury and playing at an All-Star level. 

Next, Denver’s offense wasn’t exactly humming with Jokic in the lineup. The Nuggets are 26th in the NBA in scoring over the last four games. Portland might have the worst scoring offense in the NBA on the road (106 points per game) but don’t fix it if it’s not broken. Portland has enjoyed the underdog role and has been giant killers after beating Milwaukee and Philadelphia. The Trail Blazers can hang within the number on Friday. Take the points. 


Game odds update periodically and are subject to change.