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NBA MVP Odds Take a Turn on FanDuel Sportsbook Following Injuries to LeBron James and Joel Embiid

David Kaestle
Lebron James and Joel Embiid have dropped in NBA MVP odds.
Lebron James and Joel Embiid have dropped in NBA MVP odds. / Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

For much of the season, the NBA MVP Award seemed like a three-man race, with Joel Embiid and LeBron James seesawing the top spot in the odds, and Nikola Jokic always close behind. However, with recent injuries to both Embiid and James, which has and will keep them both out for weeks, a new leader has emerged.

Nikola Jokic NBA MVP Odds

Nikola Jokic is now the odds-on favorite to take home the award at -110. Embiid and James have both dropped back down to +600. And two-time defending MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo is right behind them at +650.

NBA MVP Odds 2020-21

As of March 10, Embiid held the odds lead at +190 over James' +240. While Jokic sat at +490.

The Nuggets have disappointed as a team in many people's eyes this season, but they still remain 5th in the west, and only 2.5 games out of third place, and 5.5 games out of first place with a little more than 1/3 of the season remaining.

But Jokic has put up insane numbers all season, averaging 27.1 points per game (PPG), 11.2 rebounds and 8.6 assists. A truly impressive stat line coming from a center in a guard-driven league. His odds are certainly justified, especially when he has played in all 42 of the Nuggets' games this season.

Embiid and James' numbers are just as impressive, but its clear these injuries and the time missed that goes along with them will hurt their odds at taking home the hardware. The best ability is availability, and Jokic is the clear winner on that front.

There is still plenty of basketball to be played, but this is a massive shakeup in the odds, and both Embiid and LeBron are going to have a big hill to climb upon their returns if they plan on winning the award.

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David Kaestle is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, David also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username davekaestle. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.