Square bears love a front runner, so it’s no shocker that the best players on the top team in each conference also happen to top the NBA MVP futures board. LeBron James (+350 odds) and Joel Embiid (+600 odds) are the favorites for NBA MVP, according to a recent update by the Westgate SuperBook in Las Vegas.

LeBron James Joel Embiid MVP Odds Betting NBA
Joel Embiid of the Philadelphia 76ers defends LA Lakers star LeBron James at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. (Image: David Dow/Getty)

The Philadelphia 76ers currently occupy the top spot in the Eastern Conference with a 13-6 record. The Sixers are difficult to beat on their home turf with a 10-1 home record in Philly.

The Lakers slipped to 14-5 after they lost to the Sixers the other night. The Lakers were undefeated at 10-0 before their trip to Philly. After the Sixers loss, the Lakers are still the best road team in the league at 10-1.

NBA MVP ODDS (Updated 1.27.21)
  • LeBron James +350
  • Luka Doncic +600
  • Joel Embiid +600
  • Kevin Durant +700
  • Nikola Jokic +700
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo +1000
  • Stephen Curry +2000
  • Damian Lillard +2500
  • Anthony Davis +3000
  • James Harden +3000
  • Kawhi Leonard +6000
  • Paul George +6000

The red-hot Utah Jazz won 10 games in a row and are fighting with the Lakers for the top spot in the Western Conference. Despite their run, Donovan Mitchell isn’t getting any love at the betting window. Spida is +10000 odds to win MVP.

Bradley Beal, the NBA’s leading scorer, has been on a heater this month, averaging 41 points per game. But, the Washington Wizards are the worst team in the league. When you play for an awful team, it’s hard to sway MVP voters or draw the attention of fair-weather bettors.

TOP 3: LBJ, Doncic, and Embiid

Luka Doncic had been the consensus MVP favorite since the season ended, but the Slovenian wunderkind has been overtaken by King James. The Dallas Maverick star is still near the top of the board at +600 odds.

LeBron’s beard is getting greyer, but he’s still one of the toughest players in the league. LeBron’s odds jumped from +600 to +350 odds in recent weeks. His 46-point game against the Cleveland Cavs definitely moved the needle on his MVP odds. LeBron became only the fifth player in NBA history, aged 36 or older, to score 46 points.

“People have to be more in awe of what LeBron’s doing the older he gets,” Westgate’s bookmaker Jeff Sherman told David Purdum at ESPN. “That has to play in some voters’ minds. I think that could sway some people who didn’t vote for him last year.”

LeBron sad he wasn’t pissed off that he was snubbed out of the MVP voting in favor of the Greek Freak. LeBron claims he only cares about NBA championships, but I’d be pissed too if all I had was Anthony Davis to help me carry a low-fi team like last year’s Lakers’ squad. The Greek Freak had a solid cast around him, but he disappeared in the playoffs. LeBron, on the other hand, grew stronger and stronger the deeper he went into the postseason.

Joel Embiid, ranked fourth in the NBA in scoring, averages 27.7 points and 11.1 rebounds per game. His PER of 30.13 is ranked #2. In 15 games this season, Embiid posted double-doubles 10 times. In the last 10 days, Embiid destroyed the Boston Celtics in back-to-back games with 42 points and 10 rebounds, preceding a 38-point and 11-boards effort. Last weekend against Detroit, Embiid snapped off 33 points and 14 rebounds. Embiid is now +600 odds to win MVP.

Big Guys: KD, Jokic, Greek Freak

Giannis Antetokounmpo, who won the MVP over the past two seasons, slipped to +1000 odds to win his third-straight NBA MVP. The Greek Freak is getting no love this year. After another disappointing postseason, the public has soured a bit on the Freak.

But, it’s not like the Bucks are awful. With an 11-6 record, they have the second-best record in the Eastern Conference. The Freak leads the high-octane Bucks with 119.8 ppg.

“Giannis is almost playing his way out of the conversation,” added Sherman from the SuperBook. “The Bucks are doing less than expected. There’s voter fatigue and people can’t help but remember the playoffs.”

Earlier in the week, Kevin Durant and Nikola Jokic saw their MVP odds improve. In the most recent update, KD and Jokic are both +700 odds. Jokic nearly averages a triple-double with 25.2 points, 11.8 rebounds, and 8.9 assists per game. Jokic scored 29 points and hauled down 22 rebounds in a double-overtime victory over the Phoenix Suns last weekend. He’s now scored 20-plus points in nine straight games.

Durant averages 30.5 points, 7.5 rebounds, and 5.5 assists per game this season with Brooklyn. But KD missed 25% of the season thus far, appearing in only 15 out of 20 games with the Nets. That’s still better than Kyrie Irving, who missed eight games due to injuries and/or personal reasons. KD scored 30-plus in seven out of his last nine games. The Nets are 7-2 in those games.