NBA Predictions and Best Bets – September 3, 2020

| September 2, 2020 9:32 am PDT

Round one of the 2020 NBA playoffs is officially in the books after the Rockets and Thunder battled in a decisive game seven on Wednesday.

Sports bettors can move full speed ahead on Thursday, with two games on the docket. Let’s take a quick look at the two matchups we’ll be covering today.

  • Raptors vs. Celtics
  • Nuggets vs. Clippers

I picked Toronto in each of the first two games of their series, and they’ve failed to deliver. A team with their depth, coaching, and efficiency isn’t about to get swept, are they?

Bettors need to consider that, while game one of the Nuggets vs. Clippers series also gets underway. L.A. is obviously the better team on paper and the top NBA betting sites peg them as the favorite, but Denver did just show some grit after coming back from a 3-1 hole in round one.

Can the Nuggets keep it going with a game one upset? The goal is to answer these questions in Thursday’s betting preview that will detail NBA predictions and top betting picks to target.

Raptors vs. Celtics Predictions

  • Raptors to beat Celtics
  • Predicted total: 215-220

Boston has outclassed Toronto so far this series, and it’s clear they are a tough matchup for the Raptors. They haven’t yet missed the scoring and playmaking of Gordon Hayward, but something tells me they eventually will.

I hate to go back to the same bet repeatedly, but the Raptors are better than they’ve shown. If they can’t win now, when will they?

Nuggets vs. Clippers Predictions

  • Clippers to beat Nuggets
  • Predicted total: 220-225

Denver deserves a lot of credit, as they not only fended off a pesky Jazz team in a gritty seven-game series, but they also showed serious resilience in coming back from a 3-1 deficit in the series.

That doesn’t mean the Nuggets will win a single game against the Clippers, who are more talented and will also be well-rested. However, after seeing Dallas steal two games and push the Clippers to the limits in a third game, bettors can seek value via Denver in certain spots.

My Top NBA Picks for Thursday, September 3rd

  • Raptors (-1) -110
  • Raptors vs. Celtics Over 214.5 (-110)
  • Nuggets (+8) -105

Toronto has to win game three. They just have to. They didn’t come close in game one, but they did give Boston a run for their money in game two.

It’s time for them to put a complete game together and get back in this series, and given everything they’ve shown this year, they look like a terrific value bet.

Both of these teams defend well, but they’re also very efficient on offense. In a tense setting where the Raptors will be desperate and Boston will be looking for the kill, I think we can get to the Over.

In the other series, this spread feels way too thick. Denver could be very tired after a grueling seventh game just a couple of days ago, but you’re not picking them to win. The Nuggets to keep it close and beat this 8-point spread doesn’t seem like a great demand.

This is just my personal take on Thursday’s NBA betting scene, of course. You can also check out our sports betting picks section for a little extra insight, Good luck, and enjoy the games!

Noah Davis

Noah Davis is one of the more diverse writers at Like many of his colleagues, he's a huge fan of both football and basketball. But he also writes about box office records, TV show prop bets, DFS, and all kinds of other subjects.

When it comes to the NFL, Noah's favorite team is the Cleveland Browns. He enjoys cheering them on with his wife and daughter.

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