The stage is set for the 2023 NBA Finals, and basketball fans are eagerly anticipating the showdown between the Miami Heat and the Denver Nuggets. This NBA Finals matchup holds a unique distinction as only the second time in history that a No. 8 seed has made it to the championship series. In this article, we will delve into expert predictions from CBS Sports staff members and provide insights into the potential outcome of this highly anticipated series. Let's explore the expectations and analysis shared by these experts.

NBA Finals Predictions 2023: Expert Picks for Nuggets vs. Heat.

Expert Predictions:

Reiter's Pick: Nuggets in 5 

Reiter believes that the Miami Heat have displayed impressive grit, togetherness, and talent throughout their playoff run. However, he favors the Denver Nuggets to emerge victorious in five games. Reiter highlights the exceptional coaching of the Nuggets, led by Michael Malone, and the dominance of Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray. Denver's depth and well-roundedness give them the edge in this series.

Quinn's Pick: Nuggets in 5 

Quinn also predicts a Nuggets triumph in five games. He emphasizes Jokic's remarkable record against Bam Adebayo and believes that Denver's cutting and passing would exploit Miami's zone defense. Additionally, he highlights Aaron Gordon's defensive capabilities against Jimmy Butler and the potential advantage of Tyler Herro's return for the Nuggets. According to Quinn, the shooting variance between the teams will likely reveal the significant disparity in talent.

Ward-Henninger's Pick: Nuggets in 7 

Ward-Henninger predicts a seven-game series, favoring the Nuggets to ultimately emerge as champions. While acknowledging the Heat's defensive strengths and Erik Spoelstra's coaching prowess, he believes that the Nuggets' historic offense and Nikola Jokic's brilliance will be challenging for Miami to contain. Ward-Henninger predicts a competitive series but foresees Denver's scoring prowess as the deciding factor.

Botkin's Pick: Nuggets in 6 

Botkin also leans towards the Nuggets, predicting a six-game series victory for Denver. He acknowledges Miami's commendable journey but points out that the Nuggets are a well-coached, disciplined team. Botkin highlights Jokic's ability to consistently create quality scoring opportunities, Murray's impressive performance, and the overall efficiency of Denver's offense. He predicts that the Nuggets' well-roundedness and cohesion will propel them to their first-ever championship.

Herbert's Pick: Nuggets in 6 

Herbert predicts a Nuggets victory in six games, citing the challenges Miami may face defensively against Denver's offensive firepower. While recognizing the Heat's resilience and ability to overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles, Herbert points out the Nuggets' dominance against zone defenses and the lack of personnel for Miami to effectively guard Jokic. He expects Denver's offensive prowess to prevail.

Kaskey-Blomain's Pick: Nuggets in 6 

Kaskey-Blomain also predicts a Nuggets victory in six games. While acknowledging Miami's incredible run and consistency, he believes that the Nuggets' depth, talent, and consistency make them a formidable opponent. Kaskey-Blomain highlights Denver's historical offensive output and foresees Miami struggling to keep up in terms of scoring. He predicts that the Nuggets' offensive prowess will propel them to their first-ever franchise championship.

Wimbish's Pick: Nuggets in 5 

Wimbish predicts a Nuggets victory in five games. He believes that Miami's defensive options against Jokic are limited, despite Adebayo's efforts. He expects the Heat to abandon the zone defense they employed against the Celtics due to Denver's ability to exploit it. Wimbish predicts Miami's shooting to regress to its mean and expects the Nuggets' superior offensive performance to be the determining factor.

Maloney's Pick: Nuggets in 5 

Maloney predicts a Nuggets victory in five games, highlighting Jokic's status as the best player in the world and the matchup nightmare he presents for the Heat's thin frontcourt. He acknowledges Miami's impressive playoff run but doubts their ability to keep up with Denver's offensive firepower. Maloney predicts that the Nuggets' dominance, coupled with their depth, will prove insurmountable for the Heat.


Based on expert predictions, the Denver Nuggets enter the 2023 NBA Finals as the favorites to secure their first franchise championship. While the Miami Heat have showcased grit, resilience, and a depth of talent throughout their playoff run, the Nuggets' offensive firepower, cohesive play, and coaching prowess make them a formidable opponent. Led by the exceptional Nikola Jokic and supported by standout players like Jamal Murray and Aaron Gordon, the Nuggets are expected to secure a series victory. However, basketball is a game of surprises, and the Heat have proven their ability to defy expectations. As fans eagerly await the Finals, it will be intriguing to see how these predictions play out on the court.

Disclaimer: The information presented in this article is based on the available search results as of the provided date. Any updates or changes after this date may not be reflected in the article.



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