The NBA season got underway on Wednesday 25 October. Very little time has passed, but we have already been able to see some glimpses of what the trend will be like for many teams and players. Once the 82 games are played, the playoffs will begin, and we will know who will be awarded with the season awards, among them the MVP.
There are many candidates for this award, and in recent years it has been an award that brings a lot of controversy, as rarely everyone agrees on something. It should be noted that it isn’t only the individual player who is judged, but also the team’s record.
Because of this, there are some players worth mentioning, but I don’t think they can finally fight for this award, such as Joel Embiid (reigning MVP champion), Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Devin Booker or Kevin Durant.
Without further ado, let’s take a look at my favourites.
5. Stephen Curry:
What can we say about Don Stephen, a person who has already won everything in the league. Curry is one of those players that when they think they are dead, he grows up. We could already see it when the Warriors won the ring two seasons ago.
On top of all this, the Warriors and especially Curry have had a great start to the season. In every game he looks very fresh and very accurate with those impossible three pointers for mortals like his.
The doubts that haunts me about this player are the injuries. In recent years we have seen the player miss too many games due to injury, something that plays against him when trying to win this trophy.
As for the Warriors, I don’t see a great squad. Still, I think they will win quite a few games (pretty much because of this guy’s heroics). What I can say, though, is that if Curry is healthy all season, watch out for a late-season upset in this trophy.
4. Jayson Tatum:
The Celtics star is one of the best players in the league, and he’s getting better every year. I think he can easily go over 30 points and eight rebounds this season.
I have placed him so low because of the context in which he finds himself. Currently, the Boston Celtics are a very complete team and have many players who can become the references in different games. Apart from Tatum, there are Brown, Porzingis, Holiday or even White.
The positive point of this great squad is that, as we are always used to, the Celtics will fight to take that first place in their conference.
3. Giannis Antetokounmpo:
Giannis is a player who is always here. Whether by A or B, he is always a player who ends up fighting for the award every year. The Greek left in a huff after being eliminated prematurely last season in the playoffs.
I think the Greek has been getting in tune all summer to crack the league this year and get the bad taste out of his mouth from last season. I put him above Tatum because I think he is a more consistent player and is much more present on both ends of the court.
The Bucks are joining Lillard, a move that will add a lot to the offense, albeit at the cost of losing Jrue Holiday, who had formed one of the NBA‘s best duos with Giannis. Time will tell if this trade proved beneficial, but what is certain is that the Bucks will be among the top teams in the East.
2. Luka Dončić:
The young star of the Mavericks is always in first place in the American bookmakers to take the MVP. If we talk about Luka, we have nothing to complain about, as he is probably the top-3 best player in the league on an individual level.
The main problem for the Slovenian over the years has always been the same: the team around him. As I already mentioned, this award not only values the individual level, but the collective one has a big impact. That said, the Dallas Mavericks have never lived up to the diamond they have.
But this year looks different. The Luka-Irving pairing that was created in the middle of last season looks like it’s going to make a big mess of the regular season this year. Add to that new players like Grant Williams.
Luka won’t disappoint, so his chances to be MVP will depend on the number of wins of his team, which I think this year can be a surprise in the Wild West.
1. Nikola Jokic:
Undoubtedly, Nikola Jokic is the overwhelming favourite to win this award for the third time in four years. The 28-year-old Serbian center established himself as a champion last season by winning the Finals MVP. You only have to watch him play to see that he has something special, a player who makes his teammates better. Last year he finished second, fighting until the last minute with Embiid.
In his favour, he is a statistical machine. The Serbian giant averages a triple-double almost every night, something that plays a lot in his favour. Plus, you have to add to this that he is surrounded by the current champion team, which has barely touched the roster much and is always a team that in the regular season performs very well.
Main image: @sixers.