Go ahead and make your case for James Harden, it’s a good one. Russell Westbrook admits he wants to win the MVP this year and has played well enough the last couple months to be in consideration. If your criteria is the best player, it’s still LeBron James. Chris Paul has some staunch backers.
Oddsmakers care about none of it — they care about who is likely to win and who the bettors are putting their money on.
They have Stephen Curry far ahead as the MVP favorite. Here are the latest odds courtesy online gaming site Bovada:
Stephen Curry 1/4
James Harden 3/1
Russell Westbrook 5/1
LeBron James 25/1
It seems trendy to pick against Curry, dismissing the “best player on the best team” argument out of hand. But Curry is averaging 23.7 points a game shooting 43.4 percent from three, he’s dishing out 7.8 assists a game, plus he is the focal point of one of the NBA’s top two offenses. He has a PER of 28 (third in the league), and he’s second in win shares. If you want value to his team, the Warriors are 16.9 points worse per 100 possessions when he is off the court.
Curry is going to win this award. More than that, he’s earned it.