NBA News: Final Individual Award Odds Before End of 2020-21 Season

The NBA is entering its last week of regular-season action for the 2020-21 season. The Play-In Tournament is scheduled to begin on Tuesday, May 18, meaning that this week is the last time players can make their cases to win each of the individual awards.

Earlier in the season, you could argue that multiple players should win each award. Take the Most Valuable Player Award as an example. At the beginning of the 2020-21 NBA campaign, LeBron James was favored to win it. Then it changed to Joel Embiid before going back to James and then to Nikola Jokic.

Now, with only a handful of games, it could be tough to overthrow whoever the favorite is for each NBA award. With that being said, here’s a look at each awards’ odds list as we enter the final week of the 2020-21 season.

NBA Odds: Most Valuable Player

Odds via BetOnline as of Tuesday, May 11

  • Nikola Jokic (-5000)
  • Joel Embiid (+850)
  • Stephen Curry (+1400)
  • Giannis Antetokounmpo (+2200)

Full odds list available at

At -5000 odds, it would take a miracle for someone to overthrow Jokic as the NBA MVP favorite. The Serbian center has been playing out of his mind this season, averaging 26.4/10.8/8.5 (nearly a triple-double per game) on .566/.402/.863 shooting. Even with Jamal Murray out of the lineup, Jokic has the Nuggets as a top-4 team in the West and will be looking to make waves this postseason.

Rookie of the Year Odds

Odds via BetOnline as of Tuesday, May 11

  • LaMelo Ball (-700)
  • Anthony Edwards (+400)

When LaMelo Ball injured his wrist back in March, people thought his NBA Rookie of the Year campaign was over. However, he returned to the Charlotte Hornets’ lineup less than a month later and looks like he hasn’t missed a beat.

Ball is second in rookie points (16.0) and rebounds (5.8) per game while leading his first-year peers in assist (6.2). It’s just rare for an NBA rookie to walk in and instantly become one of the better point guards in the league.

NBA Odds: Most Improved Player of the Year

Odds via BetOnline as of Tuesday, May 11

  • Julius Randle (-10000)
  • Jerami Grant (+1600)
  • Michael Porter Jr. (+2800)

This is one of those awards that barely needs a discussion. Yes, Jerami Grant and Michael Porter Jr. have assumed bigger roles this season, but neither man improved as much as Julius Randle. The New York Knicks’ top player became an NBA all-star for the first time in his career this season. Now that he’s finally reached his potential, here’s a look at Randle’s stats in 2021 compared to last year:

  • 2019-20: 19.5/9.7/3.1
  • 2020-21: 23.9/10.3/5.9

Sixth Man of the Year Odds

Odds via BetOnline as of Tuesday, May 11

  • Jordan Clarkson (-1200)
  • Joe Ingles (+500)
  • Jalen Brunson (+2800)

Jordan Clarkson is one of the best pure sixth men in the league. He’s only started once in the 65 games that he’s played and is averaging a career-high in points (18.0) and rebounds (4.1) per game. To make things even more impressive, Clarkson has dropped at least 30 points 13 times this season, which is pretty rare for a bench player.

NBA Odds: Defensive Player of the Year

Odds via BetOnline as of Tuesday, May 11

  • Rudy Gobert (-1500)
  • Ben Simmons (+750)

It goes without saying that Rudy Gobert is probably the best defensive player in the league, at least for this season. He leads the league in blocks (2.7) and is second in rebounds per game (13.3). He’s also first in defensive win shares and defensive rating, so it’d be hard to find another player who has that type of impact on defense for his team. Much like other players we’ve seen, this award is Gobert’s to lose.

Devon Platana
Devon Platana

After graduating with a Masters degree in Journalism, Devon joined USGS to improve his sports writing skills. As a lifelong sports fan, one of Devon’s favorite things to do is analyze statistics across all sports.