NBA MVP Odds 2021

MVP Betting Favorites

In 2020, Giannis Antetokounmpo became the first player to win back-to-back NBA MVP awards since Steph Curry in 2015 and 2016. The Greek Freak will now be looking to make even more history as he seeks a 3-peat. No player has won three MVPs in a row since Celtics legend Larry Bird in the mid-1980s.

Other players in the mix to win basketball’s most prestigious hardware in 2021 at DraftKings Sportsbook are Luka Doncic (+600), Anthony Davis (+700), LeBron James (+700), Curry (+1000), Kawhi Leonard (+1200) and Kevin Durant (+1600).

NBA MVP odds 2021

Regular Season MVP

Game
(Eastern Time)
(EST)
Giannis Antetokounmpo
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+600
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+350
Luka Doncic
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+600
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+450
Anthony Davis
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+700
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+700
LeBron James
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+700
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+900
Steph Curry
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+1000
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+600
Kawhi Leonard
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+1200
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+900
Kevin Durant
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+1600
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+1200
Jimmy Butler
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+2000
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+6000
James Harden
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+2000
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+700
Nikola Jokic
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+2000
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+2500
Damien Lillard
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+2000
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+3000
Jayson Tatum
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+2000
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+1200
Joel Embiid
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+4000
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+2000
Kyrie Irving
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+4000
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+5000
Paul George
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+5000
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+10000

NBA MVP as a futures bet

Betting on the MVP winner is one of the more popular options for outright bets known as “Futures,” which are usually wagers on a season-long outcome such as the NBA champion, NBA division winner, or individual award winners. It’s also possible to bet Over or Under on Team Win totals, i.e. the number of games a team is expected to win during the regular season.

Odds for futures bets are set during the preseason, but can change throughout the season based on news and results.

For the purposes of MVP betting, players will be listed in order of the favorites.

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Where you can bet on the MVP legally

Sports betting is currently legal at a regulated sportsbook in the following states:

Arkansas
Colorado
Delaware
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Michigan
Mississippi
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
Nevada
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
West Virginia

Legislation is on the table in a number of states with more states sure to legalize sports betting in the upcoming years.

Residents of Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and West Virginia have access to online sportsbooks, including the platforms created by industry titans DraftKings and FanDuel. William Hill and other online books also offer great opportunities to bet on NBA games and Futures.

In order to bet on MVP, users can click on the NBA tab and find the tab labeled “Futures” and move to “Player Futures.” Regular Season MVP should be one of the categories along with Rookie of the Year, Defensive Player of the Year, and more postseason awards.

Previous winners and trends

As mentioned above, only two MVP winners in the “modern era” have come from teams that won 50 games or fewer. Additionally, since 1985 only two MVPs have come from teams that failed to finish at least second in their conference.

So the starting point for choosing a good bet is finding the best player on a winning team. Heading into the 2019-2020 season, sportsbooks regarded the Clippers (+325), Lakers (+425), Bucks (+650), 76ers (+700) and Rockets (+800) as the top five contenders for an NBA championship.

But we’re looking at a regular-season award, so consider that the Nuggets (+425) and Jazz (+425) were considered two of the most likely teams to finish first in the Western Conference.

Based on Team Win Totals, the Bucks (56.5), Clippers (56.5), Sixers (53.5), Jazz (53.5), Rockets (52.5) and Nuggets (52.5) were the teams expected to finish the season with over 50 wins and thus have a legitimate MVP candidate.

Because the award is voted upon by sportswriters, a players’ body of work tends to put them over the top. Only four MVP winners were younger than 23 and the last rookie to win the MVP was Wes Unseld back in 1969.

Scoring is a key criteria for MVP, as the NBA’s leading scorer has won the award in four of the past five years.

While the Center position is fading in today’s small-ball NBA, that position leads the way in MVP awards with 25, although 22 of those came in the first 28 years of the award.

Over the last 14 years, guards have won the award 8 times, signifying how the NBA has transitioned to a faster-paced, higher-scoring game. The past four guards to win (James Harden, Russell Westbrook, Steph Curry, and Derrick Rose) are not particularly renowned defenders. Posting gaudy offensive numbers can be enough to sway voters.

Shooting guards have won the fewest awards (eight) in the history of the MVP and Michael Jordan snagged 5 of those trophies.