NBA Betting Tips: How to Pick an MVP Award Winner

NBA Betting Tips: How to Pick an MVP Award Winner

There isn’t a more individually-focused team game than NBA basketball. More times than not, the best player on the court’s team has the advantage, and it’s what makes the MVP race so thrilling every year for basketball betting enthusiasts.

When browsing the top bookmakers the usual suspects are in the running each year – it’s rare for a rising star to pop up that quickly into the MVP discussions – but there are a few trends and statistics to follow that will make your wager a smarter one.

Find a Winner

This may sound obvious, but it goes deeper than just finding a player on a winning team (which, thus, makes him more valuable). Consider that before 2018 over a span of 36 seasons, the MVP award winner’s team finished first in their conference a whopping 28 times. Six other MVPs finished second, one finished third (Michael Jordan, 1988) and one finished sixth (Russell Westbrook, 2017).

That means the average finish of the MVP award winner in his conference over the last four decades is 1.36, even with that Westbrook outlier (we’ll get to him later).

It’s not just that the MVP award winner is on a good team each year; he’s usually on a great team. If you’re searching for an MVP pick, consider the team that’s been built around him and whether they’re trending up enough to flirt with a top-3 standing in their conference.

There’s a difference between an MVP and a really good, even great, player. He’s got to make everyone else around him better, which means vaulting his team to a top spot in the conference and league.

A Storyline is Crucial

It’s important to remember exactly who’s voting for league MVP. It’s not the coaches or the players. It’s the media. And naturally, there’s nothing the media loves more than a good storyline. It’s simply not enough to post spectacular numbers or lead your team to the top of the standings – though both are required to be in the conversation.

More important is an angle and a storyline to attach to that player’s season. Consider the offseason the team had.

Did a fellow star leave in the offseason, leaving that player to carry the load? Did that player have success in the previous season’s playoffs and is ready to make the jump to super-stardom? Is the potential to break an NBA record in play? Could that player’s team be on the cusp of winning a conference title?

Finding a long-term, bigger-picture storyline to accompany the season you think that player will have goes a long way. The voters take it into consideration. Numbers are nice, but the story is what sells (and gets the vote). See the fourth bullet point for times when it’s mattered.

Find a Future Hall of Famer

The NBA is unique in the sense that winners of the MVP rarely come out of nowhere, and rarely are flashes in the pan. In the NFL a quarterback can catch fire and win the MVP and regress to the mean, and we’ve seen baseball players put together majestic seasons only to fade away.

The NBA is different. Since the award was first handed out 63 years ago in 1956 to Bob Petit, all but one player is either in the Hall of Fame or on pace to be inducted.

Thirty-two different players have won the award, and the 25 retired players are all in the Hall of Fame. Six active players who have won it (Nowitzki, LeBron, Durant, Curry, Westbrook, Harden) are all on pace.

The only non-future HOFer is Derrick Rose, who won in 2011 before crippling knee injuries halted his career trajectory. So when considering an MVP wager, ask yourself if this players is on his way to the Hall of Fame or might be in the early stages of a Hall of Fame career. In the NBA, sustained success matters when it comes to the MVP.


Check Out: Legal Ontario Sports Betting sites and major sports to bet on.


When in Doubt, Points Matter

There’s far more to basketball than scoring. We all know that. But it sure helps your MVP odds if, above all else, you can score. It almost always means you’re carrying the burden of leading your team each night, having the ball in your hands.

Four of the last five MVPs have led the league in scoring, and in the last 11 years only two MVPs have been outside the top five in points per game. But remember Step 2, about having a storyline?

The two outside the top five were Steph Curry in 2015, who set the NBA record for 3-pointers in a season. The other was Derrick Rose, who at 22 years old led the Bulls to an NBA-best 62 wins.

They had storylines attached to their names that made up for the lack of scoring. The offense in today’s NBA is as good as it’s ever been, meaning scorers are going to rack up the headlines. If all else fails, find yourself a scorer.

Now that you've got the basics down for betting the MVP market, lets check out the Rookie of the Year market.

Recommended Betting Sites

Bell Icon
Affiliate Disclosure: At Gambling.com, we want to ensure that players are matched with the right casino and sportsbook offers for them. For this reason, some of the recommended site links are affiliate links. This means that if you visit a website through our link and make a deposit, Gambling.com will receive a commission payment at no extra cost to you. At Gambling.com, we want to ensure that players are matched with the right casino and sportsbook offers for them. For this reason, some of the recommended site links are affiliate links. More
  1. Brand Ambassador Teddy Sheringham
    Live Streaming of UK Horse Racing
    Acca Club: £5 Free Bet Every Week
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    Yes
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    9
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    Yes
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    Yes
    BetUK have former England footballer Teddy Sheringham and six time champion jockey Kieren Fallon as brand ambassadors and betting experts.
  2. 2
    Kwiff Sports
    Established 2015
    More Details
    Random Supercharged Payouts
    Weekly ‘kwiff Club’ Cashback & Free Bets
    ‘Acca Shield’ Refund (if One Leg Fails)
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    Yes
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    13
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    No
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    Yes
    When a customer places a bet with kwiff, they may find that their bet is “kwiffed” - where you receive increased odds after placing your bet.
  3. 3
    BetVictor Sports
    Established 2000
    More Details
    Long Established UK Bookmaker
    BV Loyalty Club - Weekly £5 Free Bet
    Free to Play 'Pick 6' Predictor Game
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    Yes
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    12
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    Yes
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    No
    BetVictor is named after founder Victor Chandler (known as the 'Gentleman Bookmaker') and they boast superstar jockey Rachael Blackmore, plus football legends Michael Owen and Harry Redknapp amongst their brand ambassadors and betting experts.
  4. Create your own Multiples with Bet Builder
    Live Streaming of all UK & Irish Racing
    Daily Price Enhancements & Specials
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    Yes
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    16
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    Yes
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    Yes
    888sport offer a wide range of sports betting markets, combined with regular enhanced specials, plus an exclusive 'Acca Club' (bet £20 on Multiples or Bet Builder to get a £5 free bet - every week).
  5. 5
    Spreadex Betting
    Established 1999
    More Details
    Primary Shirt Sponsor of Burnley FC
    Football First Goalscorer Insurance
    Horse Racing '2nd to a Rag' Insurance
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    No
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    20
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    Yes
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    No
    Spreadex is the only UK betting site to offer traditional sportsbook fixed-odds betting as well as sports spread betting and financial trading from the same account. It is also one of the few betting companies to offer credit facilities - meaning sports betters can place bets without having to first deposit funds.
  6. 6
    BetItOn Sportsbook
    Established 2020
    More Details
    'Rising Star Operator of the Year' 2021
    Interactive Football Match Centre
    ‘BoostItOn’ Accumulator Boosts
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    No
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    27
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    No
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    No
    BetItOn have ex-Liverpool striker and Champions League winner Djibril Cissé as their brand ambassador and resident football expert.
  7. 10% Cash-Back on Various Sports
    'Wager Wars' Cash Prizes
    Full & Partial Cash-Out Options
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    BB30
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    No
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    16
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    Yes
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    No
    BritainBet is a relatively new sports betting site and casino platform, which offers Bet Builder and Cash-Outs, plus 24/7 customer service.
  8. Mobile First Betting Interface
    'Leo King' Sports Prediction Game
    24/7 Customer Service
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    No
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    34
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    Yes
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    No
    Leo Vegas Sports is the sportsbook from this multi-award-winning casino operator, with a focus on mobile users - including a sport betting app for Android & iOS Devices.
  9. Simple & Easy to Navigate Betting Lobby
    'Wager Wars' Leaderboard & Cash Prizes
    10% Cashback on Sports Betting Losses
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    No
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    12
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    No
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    No
    The Online Casino, as its name clearly indicates, is a casino first operator with an added sportsbook if you also fancy some sports wagers.
  10. Awarded 'Sportsbook of the Year' 2018/19/20/21
    Live Streaming of 1000's of Events
    2 Goals Ahead Early Payout Offer
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    Yes
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    31
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    Yes
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    No
    Bet365 offer the most comprehensive online sports betting service, including live steaming of a huge range of sports, plus a unique 'Edit Bet' functionality.
  11. 11
    10bet Sports
    Established 2003
    More Details
    Regular Free Bets & Enhanced Odds Specials
    Cutting Edge In-Play Betting Options
    Accumulator Boosts of up to 50%
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    No
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    12
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    Yes
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    No
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    No
    10bet is one of the smaller online bookmaker brands in the UK but they are becoming more popular thanks to their impressive website and daily betting promotions.
  12. 12
    Coral Sports
    Established 2002
    More Details
    One of the UK's Biggest Bookmakers
    Football & Racing 'Super Series' Predictor Games
    'Beaten by a Length' Free Bets
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    No
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    14
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    No
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    No
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    Yes
    Coral has long established high street shops across the UK and with their industry-leading Coral Connect card you can deposit and withdraw money in shops, alongside a host of other benefits.
  13. 'Million Pound Picks' Predictor Game
    Live Streaming of all UK & Irish Racing
    3 x Odds Boost Tokens Every Week
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    Yes
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    23
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    Yes
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    No
    Grosvenor Sport is the sportsbook of Grosvenor Casinos - the UK's largest casino operator with over 50 casinos located in major towns and cities across the UK.
  14. UK's Leading Horse Racing Pool Betting Operator
    Home of the Placepot & Exclusive Placepot App
    Never Beaten by SP on Horse Racing with Tote+
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    Yes
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    2
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    No
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    No
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    No
    The Tote offers horse racing pool betting, popular with punters who place small stakes to win large amounts. Favourite bets include the Placepot (picking a horse to be placed in the first six races) and Jackpot/Scoop6 (picking the winner of each of six nominated races on a single day).
  15. Official UK Betting Partner of Fulham FC
    Regular Money-Back Specials
    'Racing Sportsbook of the Year' 2020
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    No
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    8
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    Yes
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    No
    Fitzdares have offered a boutique bookmaker service to members of their exclusive Mayfair Club (The Fitzdares Club) since 1882, but have now launched an online sportsbook open to all.
  16. 17
    Ladbrokes Sports
    Established 2000
    More Details
    Daily Odds Boost Tokens
    #GetAPrice - Create Your Own Bet
    Edit Accumulator Bets In-Running
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    Yes
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    22
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    Yes
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    No
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    Yes
    Ladbrokes is one of the world’s leading betting and gaming companies with a heritage dating back to 1886 and betting shops across the UK and Ireland. They were awarded 'Football Sportsbook of the Year' in 2021.
  17. 18
    William Hill Sports
    Established 2008
    More Details
    'Sports Betting Operator of the Year' 2020 & 2022
    Official Betting Partner of Tottenham Hotspur FC
    Free to Play 'Free or 4' Predictor Game
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    Yes
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    31
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    Yes
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    Yes
    Named after its founder way back in 1934, William Hill is now one of the world's biggest bookmaker brands and operates over 1400 betting shops throughout the UK.
  18. 19
    Monster Casino Sports
    Established 2017
    More Details
    Dual Sportsbook & Casino Platform
    10% Cashback on Sports Betting Losses
    'Wager Wars' Leaderboard & Cash Prizes
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    No
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    30
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    No
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    No
    Monster Casino Sportsbook is the new sports betting offering from this long established casino brand, with a small but select selection of sports to bet on.
  19. Sponsors of the BoyleSports Irish Grand National
    £5 Free Acca for Every 5 Acca's Placed
    Free Bet if Second to the SP Favourite
    Bonus Code
    The code required to claim this sign-up bonus (if any)
    not required
    Live Streaming
    Is there live streaming of sporting events?
    Yes
    In-Play Betting
    The number of sports with in-play betting available
    40
    Bet Builder
    Can you create your own personalised bets?
    Yes
    Cash Out
    Can you cash out of bets before an event has finished?
    Yes
    Acca Insurance
    Refund or free bet when one selection in an accumulator lets the bet down
    Yes
    BoyleSports are an independent Irish bookmaker who are shirt sponsors of Coventry City FC and Birmingham City FC and an official betting partner to Newcastle United FC and Wolverhampton Wanderers FC.
Show More
Showing 20 of 38
×