After a convincing win on Wednesday against the Minnesota Timberwolves, the Nuggets are alone in first place in the Western conference with two games to go in the regular season.  Tonight they visit Victor Wembanyama and the San Antonio Spurs.  If the Nuggets win their last two games, they will be the one seed and have home court advantage through at least the Western Conference finals.  The Spurs (5-5 in their last 10) are wrapping up their final games of a complete rebuild and have nothing at stake in this game.

I’m a believer in the idea that in the NBA the team that needs the game the most tends to win.  Tonight that is the Nuggets.  If they fail to win their final two games they could fall as far as third in the standings depending upon how the Minnesota Timberwolves and Oklahoma City Thunder complete their seasons.  Getting a win tonight is key for the Denver Nuggets – having homecourt could make the difference in winning and losing a series in the difficult Western Conference.  All 30 teams play tonight and again on Sunday so there will be lots of games impacting the standings.

Unlike the Pleas, I am not a professional writer, so please excuse any errors or omissions.  I will try to avoid the incorrect use of any hominids so bare with me.

The Essentials

Who: Denver Nuggets (56-24) vs San Antonio Spurs (20-60)

When: 6:00 PM MST

Where: Mancar’s home away from home, the Frost Bank (?) Center

How to watch/listen: Denver Stiffs does not condone piracy…unless it’s the 1990’s Seinfeld puffy shirt variety.  Definitely not the Scott Pilgrim demon hipster chick variety.  AltitudeTV where available. League Pass for non-Denver market viewers. Show up in San Antonio. 92.5 FM KKSE Altitude Sports Radio.

Rival blog: Pounding the Rock

Sunrise/Sunset: 6:29 am, 6:40 pm

Flag Status:  Full Staff

Holidays/Events:  National Big Wind Day, National Grilled Cheese Day, National Walk on Your Wild Side Day, Franklin Roosevelt Died 1945

The Matchup

Position Nuggets Spurs Advantage
PG Jamal Murray Tre Jones Nuggets
SG Kentavious Caldwell-Pope Malaki Banham Nuggets
SF Michael Porter Jr. Zach Collins Nuggets
PF Aaron Gordon Julian Champanie Nuggets
C Nikola Jokic Victor Wembanyama Nuggets
Bench Reggie Jackson, Christian Braun, Peyton Watson, Justin Holiday, DeAndre Jordan, Colin Gillespie Sandro Mamukelashvili, Devonte Graham, Blake Wesley Nuggets


Injury report: Cancar is out for the season.  All Nuggets starters listed as Probable and will play.  Cedi Ossman, Devin Vassell, Jeremy Sochan, Keldon Johnson, Charles Bassey are all out for the Spurs.

The Three Things

The thing to watch for:  Nuggets versus records

The nuggets come into tonight with the opportunity to make some history.  Nuggets can tie the 2012/2013 team with a team record 57 wins if they win tonight, and can set the record outright by winning tonight and Sunday.  Malone is currently tied for second place all time by a Nuggets coach with He Who Must Not Be Named.  Malone can move into second place alone with a team victory tonight.

The thing to remember:  Nuggets need to be focused in this one.

San Antonio has only won 20 games all season, but 5 of those have come in the last 10 games.  They have started to figure things out as the season winds down.  Nuggets need to come out focused and put this team away early.  Don’t let them hang around and try to steal something in the fourth quarter.

The thing to bet: Nikola Jokic over 0.5 dunks.

Apr 2, 2024; Denver, Colorado, USA; Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic (15) dunks the ball as San Antonio Spurs center Victor Wembanyama (1) looks on in the first quarter at Ball Arena. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Okay, I made that one up because I don’t know how to look up prop bets.  In a normal game, the under on this would be the easy bet, but this isn’t a normal game.  Last game versus Wembanyama, Jokic had three dunks in the first quarter and was on pace for 12 in the game before letting off the gas due to the blowout.  Take the over on this one and laugh all the way to the bank.  Don’t trust my advice, just take a look at the standings for Plea’s Picks.