Jamaal Murray and Nikola Jokic can lead the Nuggets past the Timberwolves who look a mess without Karl-Anthony Towns, says Dave Gray...
"Jamaal Murray has had a decent start, but he goes up against a defence that has given up more points to PGs than any other team in the league."
Denver Nuggets @ Minnesota Timberwolves
Monday, 00:00 GMT
Live on Sky Sports Arena
Big night for Murray
It has been a poor start for the Nuggets. Sitting at 1-4 is not where they want or expect to be but they can get back on track tonight. Jamaal Murray has had a decent start, but he goes up against a defence that has given up more points to PGs than any other team in the league. The only real concern with his total of 22.5 is that this turns into a blowout and he gets a bit of a rest. But the total is very tempting and I can't pass on it.
Nikola Jokic has had a great start to the season. Averaging a triple double with 23 points per game, 11 rebounds and a league leading 13 assists. He has a triple double in three of his five games so far in fact, and in those other two he came up just on rebound short. He can lead Denver out of this little hole they have got themselves in.
Towns out for the Timberwolves
The Timberwolves lost their third straight game after two wins to open the season. The losing streak has coincided with the loss of Karl-Anthony Towns who is out indefinitely with a wrist injury. They just are not the same team without him and until he is back they look to be one of the worst teams in the league. They can't stop any team on defence without Towns on the court and up against a strong, at least on paper, Denver defence they are unlikely to score enough to make up for it.
Nuggets can cover big spread
Denver have not been good enough so far this season, but without Towns they match up very well against tonight's opponents. It is hard to see how the Timberwolves slow down Murray or Jokic and I would expect big nights from both.
It is a big spread at 8.5, particularly a 1-4 side giving up those points, but Minnesota are so poor right now and the Nuggets can get back on track with a big win.