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Joel Embiid is currently the second favorite in the preseason NBA betting MVP odds at FanDuel. This is despite the fact that he finished in second place to Nikola Jokic in both the 2020-21 and 2021-22 seasons. Embiid is placed at +550, which places him just ahead of two-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo (+650), who is currently in second place behind Luka Doncic (+450).
Jokic’s chances of successfully defending his title are rated at +1000, since it is anticipated that fans will vote against granting the Serbian a three-peat. In spite of the fact that he asked to be traded during the offseason, Kevin Durant is currently the favorite at +1200, barely ahead of his former teammate Steph Curry.
NBA MVP Odds
Being the Game’s Leading Scorer Was Not Enough
In the 2021–22 season, Embiid participated in a career-high 68 games. He prevailed over the issues that were caused by Ben Simmons, and he became the first center to win the scoring title since Shaquille O’Neal. It was still not enough to beat Nikola Jokic, who had astounding statistics in both traditional and advanced categories, for the Most Valuable Player award.
He has been able to put the majority of his injury problems in the past, and the majority of his current health troubles are the consequence of freak contact injuries that he has sustained recently. In spite of this, the Sixers will manage his workload with caution, and it is quite improbable that he will play in more than 70 games in a season.
Because Simmons was not present, this presented a one-of-a-kind set of challenges for the player who had been selected third overall. Embiid’s career-high usage rate was the result of the Sixers’ offensive reliance on him to handle all offensive responsibility. Embiid finished third in the overall RAPTOR rankings despite topping the charts for points per game, playing superb defense, and having advanced metrics evaluate his season very well; yet, he was not successful overall.
Despite the fact that he has continued to become better, it is difficult to imagine Embiid playing any better than he did in 2021-22. In addition, the Simmons circus worked in Embiid’s favor from a narrative standpoint.
The Influence of Harden
The 2022–2023 season ought to be less chaotic, and as a direct consequence, the Sixers’ record ought to improve. How James Harden looks now compared to when he first arrived in Brooklyn will determine a great deal about Philadelphia’s chances. Is he the same guy? Or will the Sixers have to make do with the rusty Harden from the 2022 playoffs when they play Harden’s team?
The impact that Harden’s play has on Embiid’s potential to win MVP is natural. Even though Harden’s scoring potential was reduced, they were still an unstoppable pick-and-roll tandem. If Harden’s conditioning is improved and his hamstring is fully recovered, the Sixers have a good chance of being one of the top two teams in the Eastern Conference. This may move Embiid up from his current position as the runner-up to the position of winner.
Alternately, while it would improve the Sixers’ chances of winning the NBA Championship, Harden being somewhere near his best could hurt Embiid’s chances of winning MVP, just as a lack of help in 2021-22 helped the case for both Jokic and Embiid. Embiid and Jokic both have a strong case for the award.
Around his two stars, Daryl Morey has built a team that is comprised of parts that work well together. Because of this, the Sixers are a fascinating proposition in the NBA odds, and it may enable Embiid to put up even greater numbers. Despite this, there is a little window of time in which Harden’s performance can improve Embiid’s chances of winning an award. If he is too good, Embiid will receive less of the attention that he deserves. If he replicates his performance from the previous year, the Sixers will have a lower win total, and this will be used as a reason not to vote for Joel Embiid.
NBA MVP Odds Best Bet
Because of his history of injuries, the uncertainty surrounding the situation with Harden, and the quality of the competition, betting on Embiid at this price is unwise. The fact that Embiid has come so close to winning the NBA MVP award in each of the past two seasons may sway the votes of some voters, but the fact that his odds are currently +550 does not make him a good bet. If he continues to go closer to +800, it will become a more enticing proposition.
At this time, there are a number of attractive longshot contenders, including Anthony Edwards (+12000), Zion Williamson (+6500), and Jayson Tatum (+1400). Antetokounmpo, on the other hand, represents the best wager of the bunch.
The Greek Freak has experienced some voter fatigue, but he is once again coming off of a historic performance in the playoffs, and it is virtually certain that he will be playing for one of the five greatest teams in the Association while they are competing in the regular season.
Since his previous MVP season, Antetokounmpo has, if anything, shown signs of improvement. After finishing second in scoring, sixth in rebounding, and third in usage rate, he was ranked third in WAR and second in overall RAPTOR the previous season. He is widely regarded as the best defender in the league, despite the fact that he was not seriously considered for the Most Valuable Player award. He’s fantastic value at +650.
Best bet: Giannis Antetokounmpo (+650)
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