NBA MVP Odds 2024 – Favorites & Betting Lines

While it’s true that NBA superstars play to win championships, they also fight hard to be recognized as the NBA Most Valuable Player. Other than the Larry O’Brien Trophy, and possibly NBA Finals MVP, the regular-season MVP is basketball’s most coveted honor.

If Texas legalizes online sports betting, not only will you be able to bet on basketball, you’ll soon be able to bet on who will win NBA MVP right from your own home. As a local plus, all this is happening as Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic emerges as a perennial favorite to win NBA MVP.

Here’s a look at how MVP voting works, an overview of the favorite MVP candidates, and other trends and facts regarding the NBA MVP.

Odds to win the NBA MVP

NBA MVP odds are on the board at sportsbooks from the start of the offseason through the end of the regular season. That will be true at online sportsbooks in Texas as well when they finally arrive. MVP odds for the NBA change constantly based on on-court performance, but you lock in the odds as currently posted when you place a bet.

Typically the top candidates will have relatively short MVP odds when they are first posted, but those odds are longer before the season starts than later in the season when two or three clear favorites have emerged. For example, 2023-24 MVP winner Nikola Jokic was at around +400 before the season started, the shortest odds among all of those listed. By the All-Star break, Jokic had become the betting favorite and was at around -150 at many sites.

Then by early April as the season was winding down, it was clear Jokic was going to win the award barring any big surprises from the voters. Odds then were -4000 or -5000 at many sites, meaning you couldn’t win nearly as much on a “Joker” MVP bet then as you could have earlier. 

Current NBA MVP favorites

Over recent years there have been a few favorites who have consistently received attention from MVP voters. They include the following:

  • Luka Doncic — This Slovenian star does it all for Dallas, which is why he keeps being part of the MVP conversation year after year. In 2023-24, Doncic not only led the league in scoring with 33.9 pts. per game, he nearly averaged a triple-double by collecting 9.8 assists and 9.2 rebounds per contest.
  • Joel Embiid — The Philadelphia 76ers big man earned his first MVP in 2022-23 and was high in the voting again in 2023-24. As long as Embiid remains injury-free, he’ll be among the favorites to win another MVP.
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo — “The Greek Freak” has won two MVPs and an NBA title over recent years, and considering his continued dominant role with the Milwaukee Bucks will likely be in the mix again to win another.
  • Nikola Jokic — The “Joker” joined NBA greats Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, and Moses Malone in the exclusive three-MVP club in 2023-24. Only five other players have won more than three in NBA history: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (six), Michael Jordan (five), Bill Russell (five), LeBron James (four), and Wilt Chamberlain (four).
  • Shai Gilgeous-Alexander — The young star of the Oklahoma City Thunder was second in MVP voting to Jokic in 2023-24, which means the profilic scorer will no doubt be a favorite going forward.

Look for stars like Jalen Brunson, Jayson Tatum, Anthony Edwards and others to be favorites among NBA MVP bettors over the coming years as well.

How to bet on NBA MVP futures

The NBA MVP odds market settles after the regular season, but you can bet on it all year long. The odds are first set as the offseason begins and change based on roster moves, injury reports and, ultimately, superstar performance.

Like anything else, when you place a bet, you lock in the currently posted odds, and winners get paid at those odds no matter how much they change afterward. Most of the time, even the favorites for MVP pay like underdogs. In fact, you likely won’t have to lay money on even the biggest favorite until quite late in the season. However, as described above, the NBA MVP betting odds are almost always better earlier.

Just keep in mind that early bets are subject to the same rules as late ones, including that they all stand unless the season is canceled and there is no NBA MVP. Plus, bets are only voided and returned on players who don’t play a single game, not even for favorites who get injured early, miss most of the season, and are never truly in contention for the award.

Trends in NBA MVP betting

Two types of players win NBA MVP:

  • More than half the time, the best player on the best regular-season team wins
  • The rest go to stat stuffers who put up undeniably great numbers even on mediocre teams.

That tells you NBA MVP is an individual award in which team wins count, and that big stats aren’t necessarily a clear path to winning it. That’s especially true for scoring stats. Winning and all-around play matter much more.

Past 10 NBA MVP winners

Here’s a list of the past 10 recipients of the NBA Most Valuable Player award:

2023-24Nikola JokicCDenver Nuggets
2022-23Joel EmbiidCPhiladelphia 76ers
2021-22Nikola JokicCDenver Nuggets
2020-21Nikola JokicCDenver Nuggets
2019-20Giannis AntetokounmpoPFMilwaukee Bucks
2018-19Giannis AntetokounmpoPFMilwaukee Bucks
2017-18James HardenPGHouston Rockets
2016-17Russell WestbrookPGOklahoma City Thunder
2015-16Stephen CurryPGGolden State Warriors
2014-15Stephen CurryPGGolden State Warriors

More NBA futures odds

Other NBA futures odds markets for awards outside of NBA MVP include:

  • Rookie of the Year odds
  • Defensive Player of the Year odds
  • Most Improved Player odds
  • Sixth Man of the Year odds

Plus, you can bet on other NBA futures, including:

  • NBA Finals odds
  • Win totals (team)
  • Division winners
  • Conference Championship winners
  • Teams to make the playoffs
  • Points, rebounds or assists leaders


Who chooses the NBA MVP?

The NBA MVP award is voted on by a panel of media members. Plus, a single ballot is cast collectively by fans online. Panel members vote by awarding points to their top five on a sliding scale. The player with the most points wins.

Who has been named NBA MVP the most?

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar won a record six NBA MVPs. He won three with Milwaukee in 1971, 1972 and 1974, followed by three with the Lakers in 1976, 1977 and 1980.

What is the NBA MVP trophy called?

Since 2022-23, the NBA MVP award has been called the Michael Jordan Trophy.

Should I bet on an MVP winner to repeat?

You probably should, considering 15 MVP winners have won at least one more and eight have won three or more. Here’s the list of multiple NBA MVP winners:

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

When should I bet on NBA MVP futures odds?

The earlier you bet on NBA MVP, the better the odds are on the true favorites. Late in the season, when the MVP picture becomes clearer, the odds tighten up significantly. Unless you’re betting on longshots without much of a chance, the offseason is the best time to bet on NBA MVP futures.