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Nikola Jokic of the Denver Nuggets reacts after a made basket in overtime against the Phoenix Suns.
Nikola Jokic of the Denver Nuggets reacts after a made basket in overtime against the Phoenix Suns. Photo by Justin Tafoya/Getty Images via AFP.

At the midway point of the season, it’s time to take a look at the best bets to win the NBA MVP award.

Nikola Jokic has won two NBA MVP awards in a row, and he currently has the second shortest odds of any player to win the 2022-23 award. However, to get this year’s award, he will need to compete with Luka Doncic and Jayson Tatum who have never won the award, two-time winner Giannis Antetokounmpo, and a slew of long shots that have compelling arguments if any of the favorites slip up.

Here is our look at the best odds for the 2023 NBA MVP award, along with a look at some potential picks.

Check out our NBA best bets.

NBA MVP Odds 2023

Luka Doncic+275+290 🔥+275+260 ❄️+275
Nikola Jokic+330 🔥+300+300+325+300
Jayson Tatum+400+360 ❄️+400+375+400
Giannis Antetokounmpo+400 🔥+360+350+350+350
Kevin Durant+1000 ❄️+1400+1400+1400+1400
Joel Embiid+1600+1600+1600+1600+1400 ❄️
Ja Morant+2500+2500+3000 🔥+3000 🔥+2500
Donovan Mitchell+3500+3600 🔥+3500+3000 ❄️+3500
Stephen Curry+5000+5500 🔥+5000+5000+5000
Zion Williamson+8000 🔥+6500+6600+7000+6000 ❄️

NBA MVP Best Bets

  • Luka Doncic (+290 via FanDuel) - Jan. 10
  • Joel Embiid (+1600 via DraftKings) - Jan. 10
  • Jayson Tatum (+400 via DraftKings) - Jan. 10

NBA MVP Odds 2023: Favorites

Luka Doncic (+290 via FanDuel)

Doncic currently leads the NBA with 34 points per game. That number is more than five points higher than his previous season-high of 28.8. Doncic is also fourth in the NBA in assists per game, and he is averaging 8.8. rebounds. 

There is still a long way to go, but if Doncic leads the league in points per game, it’s hard to imagine him not winning the award. And even if he finishes second or third in scoring, the award should still be his if he keeps his assist and rebound numbers up.

Nikola Jokic (+330 via DraftKings)

The two-time reigning MVP currently is 0.3 assists per game from averaging a triple-double. Additionally, the Denver Nuggets are tied for the best record in the West. Two things working against him are that his scoring average is down from the past two seasons, and there hasn’t been a player to win three MVP awards in a row since Larry Bird from 1983-86. 

But if he averages a triple-double for the team that gets the No. 1 seed in the West, how does he not win?

Giannis Antetokounmpo (+400)

The two-time NBA MVP is currently third in the league in both points per game (31.7) and rebounds per game (11.8). His Milwaukee Bucks are third in the Eastern Conference, and they could easily make a run to the top of the standings in the second half of the season. That, mixed with the fact that Giannis is the most recent winner not named Nikola Jokic, makes him the favorite from the East.

NBA MVP Odds 2023: Contenders

Jayson Tatum (+400 via DraftKings)

Tatum is in the midst of a career year for the Boston Celtics. He’s averaging a career-high 30.8 points and 8.1 rebounds per game, and he is shooting over 47% from the floor for the first time since his rookie season. With the Celtics atop the East, Tatum could be seen as a favorite, yet the major sportsbooks almost all have him listed fourth in the odds at the moment.

Joel Embiid (+1600 via DraftKings)

Embiid has been the runner-up to Jokic for the MVP award each of the last two seasons. This year he is averaging 33.5 points and 9.8 rebounds per game. While he will never hit the assist numbers of Jokic, he could end the year averaging five or six more points than him. The biggest knock on Embiid at the moment is that he has only played in 28 games. 

Ja Morant (+3000 via BetMGM)

Morant’s 27.2 points and eight rebounds per game have helped the Grizzlies to a 27-13 record. They’re currently tied with the Nuggets atop the conference, and they’re just 1.5 games back of the Celtics for the best record in the league. It’s not always the case, but sometimes being the best player on the best team is enough to make you the MVP. With odds as high as +3000, Morant is a solid bet, as he will be in contention all year.

NBA MVP Odds 2023: Long Shots

Kevin Durant (+1400 via PointsBet)

Former MVP Kevin Durant is averaging 29.7 points per game as he has turned the Brooklyn Nets into a legitimate contender this season. While his numbers are great, he is expected to miss a month of basketball with an MCL sprain. Therefore, his odds are going to skyrocket. If the Nets struggle without him, and he is able to come back from the injury and play at the level he currently is, then he is a great dark horse contender for MVP.

Donovan Mitchell (+3600 via FanDuel)

No one’s presence has made more of a difference for a team from 2021-22 to 2022-23. In his first year with the Cleveland Cavaliers, Mitchell is averaging 28.8 points per game and took a team that was ninth in the East last season and made them one of the best teams in the NBA. There is no denying how valuable he is to his team. But will voters think that way?

LeBron James (+20000 via DraftKings)

In his four games since turning 38, James has scored 40 or more twice and 37 or more three times. Additionally, the Los Angeles Lakers have not lost during that span. It’s going to take a lot to get the Lakers into a comfortable playoff position, but if LeBron can, it may be one of the most impressive runs of his career. With odds as high as +20000, there is absolutely no reason to not place a wager on him to win.

Recent NBA MVP Winners

YearNameOpening odds
2021-22Nikola Jokic+1600
2020-21Nikola Jokic+2500
2019-20Giannis Antetokounmpo+210
2018-19Giannis Antetokounmpo+475
2017-18James Harden+1100


Who won NBA MVP last year?

Nikola Jokic (+1600) averaged 27.1 points, 13.8 rebounds, and 7.9 assists per game.

When will NBA MVP be decided?

Though the date for the 2023 award has not been decided, the award was announced on May 9, 2022.

Here are our Best NBA Betting Sites:

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* Bonuses not applicable in Ontario.

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