This article is part of our Handicapping the NBA series.
Suns moneyline (+110) at DEN – FanDuel (3:05 PM CT)
I think the Nuggets are cooked in this series. They don't have the overall talent to compete with the Suns – an issue that's made worse with Michael Porter's back injury. Getting Will Barton back doesn't swing things too much, especially if he's still playing limited minutes.
Suns moneyline (+104) at DEN – DraftKings (12:38 PM CT)
After a pair of beatdowns in Phoenix, it's reasonable to think the Nuggets will bounce back and play better at home. But unlike the Bucks last night against the James Harden-less Nets, the Nuggets are at a significant talent disadvantage. That's only been amplified by Michael Porter Jr.'s back issue, which has to be a contributing factor to his struggles thus far in the series. If Porter can't serve as a reasonable No. 2 option behind Nikola Jokic, it's hard to see a path for Denver to suddenly turn things around – barring an extremely hot shooting night.
Mikal Bridges OVER 12.5 points (-126) at DEN – FanDuel (1:39 PM CT)
My logic hasn't changed since the last game: Michael Porter plays terrible defense, plus the Denver forwards need to help defend the Suns' backcourt, due to Denver's injury issues at guard. This will leave plenty of open catch-and-shoots for Bridges, who seems jazzed (not stressed) by playoff pressure. Plus Porter is having back issues. Unlike the Bucks, I don't have faith in the Nuggets to make this a series. Without Jamal Murray, their will has been broken.
Torrey Craig over 4.5 points (-125) at DEN – DraftKings (2:16 PM CT)
I think Craig is going to continue being a valuable bench asset in this series, to the point where he's probably locked in for 15-plus minutes. He's attempted 15 shots combined in the previous two games, so while maybe his total field-goal attempts slump somewhat, it just seems unlikely he'll suddenly morph back into the guy who took just 23 shots across the six-game series with the Lakers.
Trae Young to record a double-double (-106) vs. PHI – DraftKings (12:36 PM CT)
In a crucial Game 3 in Atlanta, Young is going to need to put on a show against the 76ers to help prevent this series from getting out of hand. So far in the postseason, the star guard has been terrific at home, averaging 24 points and 11.5 assists. In this series, Young has gotten a double-double every game. I expect Young to continue to live up to the hype and post another double-double in this important Game 3.