Very few people will argue that Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James is the best player in the NBA today. As such he is always in contention for the MVP Award every year.
James is a four-time winner of the award, but hasn’t won it since 2013. Part of this is likely due to voter fatigue as he has been so good for so long, voters can overlook his great seasons in favor of excellent years from new stars.
The rise of the likes of Stephen Curry, Russell Westbrook and James Harden adds plenty of extra competition as well.
But heading into the 2018-19 season, James is the clear favorite. Bovada released their regular-season MVP odds and the 33-year-old is leading the pack via ESPN’s Dave McMenamin:
— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) August 15, 2018
Even though he is leading the pack, James will have his fair share of competition. The Pelicans’ Anthony Davis, Milwaukee Bucks’ Giannis Antetokounmpo, Kevin Durant of the Golden State Warriors, and Harden as the reigning MVP are trailing James in the odds and all are more than capable of walking away with the award.
Oftentimes the MVP goes to the best player on the best team in the league, or at least the best team in the conference. Needless to say team records will play a big role so players like Durant, Harden, Curry or even Kyrie Irving and Kawhi Leonard could easily find themselves leading the pack at some point during the season.
For James, however, leading the NBA’s premier franchise back amongst the Western Conference’s elite could be difficult for the rest to beat, especially if he maintains his numbers from a year ago. This has the chance to be one of the most crowded MVP races in a long time.