The NBA season is just around the corner so we’re covering the 2016 MVP odds from BetOnline today.
The defending NBA champion Steph Curry is not the favorite, but instead comes in tied for third at +650. Last season was one of those years where everything went right for the Warriors and they dominated the season’s narrative with Steph Curry as their focal point. It’s hard to see that repeating again, but the Warriors are a favorite for the 2016 NBA Championship so I suppose it is possible for history to repeat itself.
The favorite is the best player in the NBA, Lebron James at +250. While he is the league’s best player on a team that is extremely likely to compete for the NBA title, I just don’t see him as the favorite. He’ll take games off for rest whenever he can and he doesn’t need to dominate the box score quite like he used to. Lebron at this stage in his career is simply interested in winning a championship. He would punt the regular season if he thought he could get away with it and I just can’t see him as the MVP. Best player? Sure, but he won’t have the best season.
Last year’s runner-up was James Harden, but he’s only at +800 this year. He could easily post another solid season and the Rockets are expected to contend.
The favorite to me is Anthony Davis at +450. He is clearly the next great NBA superstar and he should make a big leap forward this year. If he remains healthy he should have a season reminiscent of Michael Jordan on the Bulls (pre-Pippen) or Lebron in Cleveland (pre-Miami). He should just fill up every category of the box score and could have huge points and rebounding numbers. He’s match-up proof and one of the best athletes in the game today. Forget the part where his team won’t be the best. If Davis is healthy, he will be the best.
Looking for a long shot? How about John Wall at +4500? The Wizards could be one of the best teams in the East this season and he is their best player? We saw last year that voters were willingly to get behind a point guard and maybe that trend will continue.
Or how about Paul George +6400? The same weak Eastern Conference rule applies here and he was one of the best players in the NBA before his freak injury before last season. Plus, the though of him at power forward is scary.
Looking for an even bigger underdog? Try Jimmy Butler at +9000. NBA analysts are all over this Bulls team and he is their best player. Maybe Fred Hoiberg will be able to focus the offense on Butler’s talents and he’l continue to grow as a superstar.