NBA MVP Odds Update: Joel Embiid Passes Nikola Jokic as the MVP Favorite

The NBA MVP race was a lock with Nikola Jokic as the frontrunner but now Joel Embiid is the favorite to win the award. Kyle Newman breaks down the NBA MVP odds.
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NBA MVP Odds Update: Joel Embiid Passes Nikola Jokic as the MVP Favorite

It wasn’t long ago that Nikola Jokic seemed to have his third straight NBA MVP locked up. Then the Denver Nuggets hit a rough patch, having lost four games in a row, all against subpar competition. That’s opened a door for Joel Embiid, who’s sprinted through it. Can Embiid win the NBA MVP now? Oddsmakers seem to think so. Let's get into it.

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On the back of the Philadelphia 76ers' six-game win streak, Embiid has once again raced out in front in the MVP race. He’s now given EVEN odds, or an implied 50% chance to win his first MVP. Throughout those six wins, the 29-year-old superstar recorded at least 31 points per game. In Wednesday's game against the Cavs, Embiid logged 18 rebounds. You heard that right. 18! He's compiling MVP-level stats at the perfect time. Can the 76er win his first MVP?

It's not to say that Jokic doesn't have a chance, though. Nikola is still right there at +160, or an implied 38.5% chance, which doesn't compare to his previous odds of winning the award. In Jokic's past seven games, he's had four contests where he scored less than 20 points.

It also wouldn’t be wise to forget about Giannis Antetokounmpo, who’s on the periphery right now at +370 or an implied 21.3% chance. Antetokounmpo put on two monstrous performances during his past two games, scoring 36 and 46 points.

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With the margins so small and so few games left, this race could be decided by who’s the hottest over the last ten or so games of the season. That’s clearly shown in the betting market. From March 1st-10th, Jokic had seen 51.9% of bets to Embiid’s 23.1%. From the 11th-today though, Embiid has seen 38.3% to Jokic’s 34.4%.

This is an incredibly difficult market to predict. Will the voters reward the Nuggets for being the best team in the West? Will there be voter fatigue that affects Jokic? Do the voters value Embiid’s scoring title more than Jokic averaging a triple-double? It could come down to which team has the better record, and they’re only half a game apart in the standings. This is one of the tightest MVP races the NBA has had in years, and it’s coming down to the final ten games or so.


PlayerOdds% of bets (Since March 11th)
Joel EmbiidEVEN38.3%
Nikola Jokic+16034.4%
Giannis Antetokounmpo+37011.7%
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A PR Associate at @OddsCheckerUS. Available for Podcasts, Radio, and TV. Quoted in Forbes, Chicago Tribune, Sports Illustrated, and more.


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