NBA MVP Betting

NBA MVP is undoubtedly a signature betting market as people love to try to predict who will be named the best player in the NBA every season. With single-game betting, it’s also the kind of thing you can now bet on all across Canada.

NBA MVP odds are now available all year long at private (when launched) and provincially-run sportsbooks The odds will change based on performance from week to week, and even game to game throughout the season, but you can always lock them in when the price is right by placing a bet.

See below for the latest NBA MVP odds at Canadian online sportsbooks plus a look at how NBA MVP voting works.

NBA MVP odds

Here’s a look at the current NBA MVP betting odds from the best Canadian online sportsbooks. Click on any odds to jump right to the sportsbook, claim your free bonus and start getting your NBA MVP bets in.

Who’s the favourite to win NBA MVP?

Injuries have kept perennial MVP favourite LeBron James from the list of favourites to win the NBA MVP Award lately. In his stead, here’s a look at the top three favourites for the upcoming NBA season:

  • Nikola Jokic led the Denver Nuggets in scoring, rebounds, assists, and field goal percentage. He was only an assist and a half per game from averaging a triple-double. If the Nuggets stay at the top of the Western Conference until the end of the regular season, he’ll be a lock for another MVP run.
  • Joel Embiid spent most of the season as the best player on the team with the best record in the East. He averaged close to a 30-point double-double and led the 76ers in scoring and rebounding. However, the Sixers path to win the East doesn’t look as clear anymore.
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo: He’s a back-to-back MVP. And the Bucks are always one of the best regular-season teams in the NBA. Giannis is always an MVP frontrunner.

NBA MVP betting trends

If there’s one trend you can easily recognize among recent NBA MVP winners it’s that the award, more often than not, goes to the best player on the best regular-season team. Seven of the past 10 MVP awards have gone to the player easily identified as the best on the team with the best regular-season record in the NBA. Of the three that didn’t, two went to the best player on the team with the second-best regular-season record.

The lone exception was Russell Westbrook on an Oklahoma City Thunder team in 2016-17 that didn’t even win its division. However, Westbrook led the league in scoring at 31.6 ppg, and with 10.7 rebounds and 10.4 assists per game, he became the first player since Oscar Robertson in 1961-62 to average a triple-double. That’s the kind of record MVP voters have a tough time ignoring.

Four of the past ten NBA MVP awards have gone to the league’s top scorer, suggesting scoring is as important a stat as any. However, nothing is as important as winning, as all of the NBA MVP winners over the past ten years have been on playoff teams with winning records.

Last 10 NBA MVP winners

Here’s a quick look at the past ten NBA MVP Award winners:

YearPlayersPositionTeam
2020–21Nikola JokicC/PFDenver Nuggets
2019–20Giannis AntetokounmpoPFMilwaukee Bucks (2)
2018–19Giannis AntetokounmpoPFMilwaukee Bucks
2017–18James HardenPGHouston Rockets
2016–17Russell WestbrookPGOklahoma City Thunder
2015–16Stephen CurryPGGolden State Warriors (2)
2014–15Stephen CurryPGGolden State Warriors
2013–14Kevin DurantSFOklahoma City Thunder
2012–13LeBron JamesSFMiami Heat (4)
2011–12LeBron JamesSFMiami Heat (3)

Canadian NBA MVP winners

One Canadian has won the NBA MVP Award, and he did it back-to-back. Victoria, British Columbia’s Steve Nash was voted NBA MVP in the 2004–05 and 2005–06 while playing point guard for the Phoenix Suns. Nash played 18 seasons in the NBA and made the NBA All-Star Team eight times. He pioneered a fast-paced style of point guard play that involved rarely giving up his dribble.

Nash’s 2004–05 season was his first in a second stint with Phoenix and he helped the team go from 29 wins a season before to an NBA-best 62 wins in 2004-05, becoming the first Canadian MVP in NBA history. He also won the Lou Marsh Trophy in 2005 as Canada’s top athlete. The Suns won 54 games in the 2005–06 season and were once again the highest-scoring team in the league, despite roster changes and injuries. Nash was voted the starting point guard for the Western Conference All-Star team for the first time and was named NBA MVP for the second year in a row. The Suns lost in the Western Conference Finals both years. Nash never won an NBA Championship as a player.

Nash is now the head coach of the Brooklyn Nets, one of the top teams in the Eastern Conference. He has played for the Canadian National Team, became general manager of the team in 2012, and a senior advisor in 2019.

More NBA futures odds

Of course, there are other NBA futures markets outside of the NBA MVP market. Futures bets for the NBA may include:

  • Over/Under team win totals
  • Division winners (regular season)
  • To make the playoffs
  • Conference winners (playoffs)
  • NBA Championship
  • Rookie of the Year
  • Most Improved Player
  • Defensive Player of the Year
  • Sixth Man of the Year
  • Coach of the Year
  • Scoring/Rebounding/Assists Champion

How NBA MVP bets work

The NBA MVP betting market is an NBA futures market, which means you’re betting on something now but the outcome won’t be determined until a later date. Futures odds are set on the offseason and may change ahead of the season based on roster moves, injury status, and other player news.

Once the season starts, the betting odds change all the time based on performance and a player’s perceived chances of winning MVP.

Bets are placed at moneyline odds that you lock in at the time you place a bet. That means your bet will pay whatever the current odds are at the time you placed it, regardless of how much those odds change. Moneyline odds are either negative or positive. Negative odds indicate a favourite and tell you how much you need to bet to win $100 plus your bet back. Positive odds indicate an underdog and tell you how much you stand to win, plus your bet back, for $100 you bet.

For example, Nikola Jokic was the favourite and sat at -140 to win NBA MVP in April 2021. If you bet $140 on Jokic at -140 and he won, you’d get paid $240. Also, James Harden sat at +500 to win NBA MVP in April 2021. If you bet $100 on Harden at +500 and he won, you’d get paid $600.

Which provinces can you bet on NBA MVP?

Right now, the most common way to bet on sports is through Provincial Lottery Corporation sportsbooks that include:

In the past, you has to combine a minimum of two or three wagers in a parlay bet and accept the less-than-fair odds these products offer. That also meant no NBA MVP Award voting at all.

Fortunately, single-game NBA betting has changed that, and a bill that would make it legal for provincial governments, provincial lotteries, or entities licensed by a provincial government to offer sports betting became law before the end of 2021.

Since most provincial lottery corporations have already embraced single-game wagering and Ontario has promised to open up its sports-betting market to privately-run online sportsbooks. NBA MVP Award betting will be available all across Canada.

NBA MVP FAQ

Who votes for NBA MVP?

It used to be a players-only thing, but now a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters in the United States and Canada votes on NBA MVP. Plus, a single ballot is cast by fans through online voting. Each panel member casts a ballot awarding specific points to their top five selections (10-7-5-3-1). The player with the most points wins.

Which player/team has won the most NBA MVP awards?

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is a record six-time NBA MVP. He won the award in 1971, 1972, and 1974 with the Milwaukee Bucks and 1976, 1977, and 1980 with the Los Angeles Lakers. Abdul-Jabbar is also a six-time NBA champion and two-time NBA Finals MVP.

What are the most controversial NBA MVP picks of recent years?

It’s hard to find any issue with the NBA MVP Award over the past decade, as it’s gone to the best player on the best time seven of ten times, the best player on the second-best team twice, and the first player to average a triple-double in 50-plus years once. Although, there are arguments that Lebron James was the best player in the league in 2010-11 when Derrick Rose won it. You probably have to go back to Steve Nash’s 2004-05 MVP Award to find some real controversy. His 15.5 ppg was significantly lower than teammate Amare Stoudemire’s 26.9 ppg. Plus, Shaquille O’Neal was dominant with 22.9 ppg and 10.4 rpg, leading Miami to the top seed in the Eastern Conference.

Who has had the best and worst MVP years?

Michal Jordan was completely dominant in 1991-92, leading the league in scoring and leading the Bulls to 67 wins and a second-consecutive NBA title. His averages of 30.1 ppg, 6.4 rpg, 6.1 apg, and 2.3 steals per game are unparalleled among other MVP winners and proved Jordan was a two-way player who could pass and score. Steve Nash’s second of back-to-back MVP Awards was likely the worst season an NBA MVP has had. His averages were a pedestrian 18.8 ppg, 10.5 apg, and 4.2 rpg. Only the assists numbers were MVP-like and they were down from a year earlier. Nash’ Suns also dropped from 62 to 54 wins, leaving Phoenix behind the Spurs and Pistons for the league’s best record.

Is it ever good to bet on a repeat MVP winner?

It’s probably a good idea to bet on a repeat MVP winner, considering there have been 14 repeat winners since the NBA started naming an MVP in the 1955–56 season. That includes eight players that have won three or more MVPs. Here’s the list:

  • Bob Pettit (2)
  • Bill Russell (5)
  • Wilt Chamberlain (4)
  • Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (6)
  • Moses Malone (3)
  • Larry Bird (3)
  • Magic Johnson (3)
  • Michael Jordan (5)
  • Karl Malone (2)
  • Tim Duncan (2)
  • Steve Nash (2)
  • LeBron James (4)
  • Stephen Curry (2)
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo (2)

How has analytics affected MVP voting or MVP winners?

Most teams now have an NBA analytics department that helps them develop strategy and a style of play. However, this has very little impact on MVP voting. The MVP still goes to the best player on the best team more often than not, and it’s plain old statistics, not analytics, that help determine who that is.

When is the best time to bet MVP futures?

The offseason is the best time to bet NBA MVP futures as the prices on the real contenders to win the award are never better. The odds drop dramatically throughout the regular season on any player with a realistic chance of winning,

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