Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors won back-to-back NBA Most Valuable Player awards in 2015 and 2016. Currently playing in his 12th season in the league, the 33-year-old point guard was the early favorite to take home his third MVP. With his play during the 2021-22 NBA season, Curry has pulled away from the rest of the MVP pack.
Kevin Durant and Giannis Antetokounmpo follow Curry in the rankings. Durant, who played with Curry on the Golden State Warriors for three seasons, is currently leading the Brooklyn Nets. Durant has one MVP award to his name. He won the award in 2014 as a member of the Oklahoma City Thunder. The 26-year-old Antetokounmpo, who plays for the Milwaukee Bucks, claimed the NBA MVP award in 2019 and 2020.
Outside of the trio of Curry, Durant and Antetokounmpo, no other player is above +1000 to claim the 2022 NBA MVP award.
Curry finished third in the voting last season behind the 76ers Joel Embiid and winner Nikola Jokic of the Denver Nuggets.
NBA MVP Odds
The Golden State Warriors have the best record in the NBA at this point in the season. The club is 29-7 and has yet to lose back-to-back games during the 2021-22 campaign. A lot of the team’s success has to do with the play of Steph Curry. Curry has averaged 27.7 points per game this season to go with 6.1 assists per game and 1.5 steals per game. The superstar point guard leads the Warriors in scoring and ranks fourth in the NBA in that stat. Curry has netted 179 three-pointers this season, which puts him 36 ahead of the No. 2 ranked Buddy Hield.
— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) January 4, 2022
The Warriors are 27-6 when Curry plays and have outscored opponents at a rate of 15.8 points per possession when Curry is playing. What is overlooked is that Curry is doing all of this while Klay Thompson is out of action. Thompson could return to the Warriors on Sunday against the Cleveland Cavaliers. When Thompson returns, expect Curry to get more space on the court.
The Brooklyn Nets were the No. 1 team in the Eastern Conference for a good portion of the 2021-22 season. As the calendar flips to 2022, Brooklyn has dropped to No. 2 behind the Chicago Bulls, but they are only two games out of the top spot. One of the main reasons for the success of the Nets has been the play of Kevin Durant.
Durant leads the NBA in scoring with an average of 29.7 points per game. That total is more than a point per game higher than the No. 2 ranked Trae Young (28.4) and seven points more than James Harden, the second highest scorer on the Nets has put up.
— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) January 2, 2022
Besides being the best player on the team, Durant has been the emotional leader of the club. He holds himself and his team accountable on the court and demands high performance.
The Milwaukee Bucks are the reigning MVP champions and 2021 NBA Finals MVP, Giannis Antetokounmpo, is one of the big reasons the Bucks are in third place in the Eastern Conference.
Antetokounmpo, who has 27.9 points per game, which is third best in the NBA. The second highest scorer on the Milwaukee club is Jrue Holiday at 18.5 points per game, which puts him at No. 30 in the NBA. To put that simply, defenses can focus on Antetokounmpo over any other player on the Bucks and still can’t shut him down.
— SLAM (@SLAMonline) January 4, 2022
Since he came back from COVID-19 protocols in late December, Antetokounmpo has averaged 33 points, 11.5 rebounds and 6.5 assists on 58.5 percent shooting.
Don’t be surprised to see Antetokounmpo move up the MVP odds as the 2021-22 NBA season goes deeper.
NBA MVP Pick
With the way Steph Curry is playing and the pace he is on, it’s hard to pick against him at this point of the NBA season.
See below the best online sportsbooks where you can wager online and choose the best one for you: