Four NBA teams are desperate to end a losing streak this week after the Oklahoma City Thunder lost five games in a row, while the Orlando Magic, Detroit Pistons, and Denver Nuggets each lost six consecutive games.
The Denver Nuggets are the biggest surprise considering that they were a playoff team for the past couple of seasons and have the reigning MVP, Nikola Jokic. Injuries finally caught up to the Nugs, however, who are without two starters and who even lost Jokic for a couple of games with a wrist injury. Jamal Murray is still recovering from a blown-out ACL. Michael Porter, Jr has been out for several weeks with a bad back, and there are rumors he could miss the entire season.
|NBA Losing Streaks
|Oklahoma City Thunder||L5||6-13||13-6|
Despite the skid, the Nuggets are +2500 odds to win the 2022 NBA championship and listed 10th on the NBA futures board over at DraftKings. There’s hope that the Nuggets can turn their season around after a break-even first quarter.
Nuggets can’t score
The streaky Nuggets started the season with a two-game win streak, then dropped two games, won back-to-back games, then lost two more against the Memphis Grizzlies to find themselves 4-4 at the start of November. The Nuggets looked great during a five-game homestand and won five-straight games to improve to 9-4 by mid-November. The wheels fell off the bus for the Nuggets over the past two weeks with a six-game losing streak.
The Nuggets really miss their secondary and tertiary scoring options. They average 102.8 ppg and are ranked fifth-worst in the NBA. Jokic is a one-man show once again, leading the team in scoring (26.4 ppg), rebounding (13.6), and assists (6.4). At least they have a healthy Will Barton (16.3 ppg) back in the lineup, but aside from Aaron Gordon (13.6 ppg), it’s been tough for the Nuggets to find points.
The Nuggets are about to embark on a seven-game road trip against the Miami Heat (13-7), Orlando Magic (4-17), New York Knicks (11-9), Chicago Bulls (13-8), New Orleans Pelicans (5-17), and a double-dip against the San Antonio Spurs (5-13). They won’t return home to Colorado until mid-December, but at least four of those seven away games are against losing teams. The Nuggets are 3-0 this season against teams with a losing record.
Fading the Nuggets has been profitable this season with a 7-12 ATS record.
OKC Thunder: Bad, yet they cover
If you’re looking for a bad team that covers the point spread, then keep an eye on the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Thunder have one of the worst records in the NBA at 6-13, but they’re 13-6 against the spread despite their five-game losing streak.
The Thunder stumbled out of the gate with four straight losses to start the season. They were 1-6 before finally turning things around with a four-game win streak. Since that high point, the Thunder lost eight out of nine games, including six in a row. The Thunder average only 99 ppg and are tied for the lowest-scoring team in the NBA with the Detroit Pistons.
The Thunder face the lowly Houston Rockets (3-16) in back-to-back home/away games this week before hitting the road for three games against the Memphis Grizzlies (10-10), Detroit Pistons (4-16), and Toronto Raptors (9-12).
East basement: Pistons and Magic
The Detroit Pistons and Orlando Magic are the two worst teams in the NBA with just four wins apiece, and they’re both caught in the middle of six-game losing streaks.
The Pistons are the lowest-scoring team in the East, averaging only 99 points per game. Cade Cunningham, the #1 pick in the 2021 NBA Draft, missed the start of the season with a sprained ankle. He had a rough debut, but he’s looked much better in the last couple of weeks, averaging 13 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 4.8 assists per game.
The Pistons are in the middle of a five-game road trip out west, with two more games this week against the Portland Trail Blazers (10-10) and sizzling Phoenix Suns (17-3).
The Orlando Magic have a young team that’s essentially a college All-star squad. All five of their starters are 23-years old or younger, which includes rookies Jalen Suggs (12.1 ppg) and Franz Wagner (12.7 ppg). The good news is that they’re all getting much-needed playing time and experience on the fly. The bad news is that they’re 4-17 and have yet to figure out how to close out games in the fourth quarter.
The Magic are fade-worthy with an 8-13 ATS record. They have games this week against the Philadelphia 76ers (10-10), Denver Nuggets (9-10), and Houston Rockets (3-16).