Nuggets’ 9-Day NBA Finals Layoff Among Longest in Last 10 Years

Nuggets’ 9-Day NBA Finals Layoff Among Longest in Last 10 Years
Fact Checked by Michael Peters

The Denver Nuggets have a good problem on their hands at the moment, stemming from the team’s four-game demolition of the L.A. Lakers in the Western Conference Finals.

That problem is the length of time the Michael Malone-coached club will have on its hands before the 2023 NBA Finals tip off June 1.

Whether the Nuggets eventually play Miami (which is currently up 3-1) or Boston remains to be seen.

Either way, oddsmakers at Caesars Sportsbook Colorado see Denver as the commanding title favorite with -215 odds to win its first title.

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Two-time league most valuable player Nikola Jokic leads the Nuggets in scoring (29.9), rebounding (13.3) and assists per game this postseason (10.3).

He is the Colorado sports betting Finals MVP frontrunner.

BetColorado.com took a look at the Nuggets’ extended wait between their Game 4 win over the Lakers on Monday and their opening game of the NBA Finals on June 1, to see how it stacks up against other breaks in recent league history.

Longest NBA Finals Layoffs Since 2014

Year Team Layoff Between Conf. Final, NBA Final Finals Game 1 Result Finals Series Result
2023Denver9 daysTBATBA
2019Golden State9 daysToronto def. GS, 118-109Raptors in 6
2017Golden State9 daysGS def. Cleveland, 113-91Warriors in 5
2015Cleveland8 daysGS def. Cleveland, 108-100 OTWarriors in 6
2015Golden State7 daysGS def. Cleveland, 108-100 OTWarriors in 6
2022Golden State6 daysBoston def. GS, 120-108Warriors in 6
2017Cleveland6 daysGS def. Cleveland, 113-91Warriors in 5
2021Phoenix5 daysPhoenix def. Milwaukee, 118-105Bucks in 6
2016Cleveland5 daysGS def. Cleveland, 104-89Cavs in 7
2014Miami5 daysSA def. Miami, 110-95Spurs in 5
2019Toronto4 daysToronto def. GS, 118-109Raptors in 6
2014San Antonio4 daysSA def. Miami, 110-95Spurs in 5
2022Boston3 daysBoston def. GS, 120-108Warriors in 6
2020L.A. Lakers3 daysL.A. def. Miami, 116-98Lakers in 6
2018Cleveland3 daysGS def. Cleveland, 124-114 OTWarriors in 4


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Nuggets’ Wait Longest In Recent History

The Nuggets’ nine-day basketball hiatus is tied with the 2017 and 2019 Golden State Warriors for the longest in the last 10 years, with both of those teams also sweeping their foes in the Western Conference Finals.

The long break, does however, give Nuggets fans plenty of time to study before making series wagers on Colorado sports betting apps.

In 2017, the Steve Kerr-coached Warriors swept San Antonio, with all four wins coming by double digits, before knocking off LeBron James and the Cavaliers in five games to capture the league title.

Two years later, the Warriors swept Portland in the conference finals, with only two games decided by less than 10 points. Golden State went on to lose to the Raptors in the NBA Finals in six games, putting a dour final note on a historic run for the franchise.

As for the other teams that had breaks of three days or more between the conference and NBA Finals, those 14 teams went 7-7 in the championship series. The five squads with the longest breaks were 3-2 in the best-of-seven league Finals.

Whether the Nuggets can improve that percentage come June 1 remains to be seen, though their 12-3 postseason record gives both fans in the stands and at Colorado sportsbooks plenty of optimism. 

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Author

Christopher Boan has been covering sports and sports betting for more than seven years, including stops at ArizonaSports.com, the Tucson Weekly and the Green Valley News.

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