Is this season’s NBA MVP race the most hotly-contested in recent history?

The NBA’s Most Valuable Player award is the most-coveted individual accolade an NBA player can receive. Some have interpreted as it meaning you were the best player in the best basketball league that season. 

Starting with the current 2022-23 NBA season, the Most Valuable Player award will be known as the Michael Jordan Trophy, as five-time winner Michael Jordan is regarded as the best NBA player in the history of the sport.

Jordan won the MVP award on no less than five separate occasions. This season, Nikola Jokic has a chance to be the fourth player – joining Larry Bird, Wilt Chamberlain, and Bill Russell — in NBA history to win three-consecutive MVPs, but he’s got a lot of competition in one of the most hotly-contested MVP races we’ve seen. 

Which players are REALLY in running for MVP?

This season is by far one of the most hotly contested in recent history for who might win the Most Valuable Player title. There are a handful of players that are most likely to win if things continue as they are. In addition to Jokic, Dallas Mavericks’ Luka Doncic, and the Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo are near the top of the list.

Only one of these players can win, and if you turn to the major sports betting websites, such as 10bet Africa, you will see that Luka Doncic has slightly more favorable odds of winning. At many of today’s most trusted online bookmakers, you will see that Doncic is currently priced at around 4/1 in UK fractional odds to win the 2022-23 MVP award. 

When converted into American/moneyline odds, this works out to 400, and when converted into European decimal odds, it works out to 5.00. It also means that Doncic has a 20% implied probability rate of winning this year’s MPV title. In comparison, Antetokounmpo is priced, on average, at around 6/1 (which is 600 in American/moneyline odds and 7.00 in decimal odds, with a 14.3% implied probability rate). 

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Which players are in contention for this year’s MVP title?

These are some of the best NBA players who are also currently in contention for this year’s MVP title are the following players:

  • Nikola Jokic @ 9/1 (900 or 10.00, with a 10% implied probability rate)
  • Kevin Durant @ 10/1 (1000 or 11.00, with a 9.10% implied probability rate)
  • Jayson Tatum @ 12/1 (1200 or 13.00, with a 7.7% implied probability rate)
  • Joel Emblid at 25/1 (2500 or 26.00, with a 3.8% implied probability rate)

You can also throw in Steph Curry, Donovan Mitchell, Zion Williamson and Ja Morant.

In other words, if you are going to place a wager on who might win this year’s NBA MVP, a much safer bet would be to put your money on Luka Doncic AND Giannis Antetokounmpo. However, don’t forget that no bet is guaranteed, no matter how certain the odds may seem. 

Keep in mind that an MVP usually comes from one of the league’s top teams as far as wins/losses are concerned. The top teams in the league right now are the Boston Celtics, Brooklyn Nets, Bucks, Nuggets and the Memphis Grizzlies — so consider this if you’re thinking of wagering on Luka, Steph Curry or Joel Embiid.

To be fair there’s a lot of basketball to be played and narratives can change week to week but as far as we can remember, this might be the tightest. most wide-open NBA MVP race in the last few decades. We’ll know if that’s true when the votes are tallied at the end of the season.

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